That’s what we call mollywhopping, ye. “Action at the Fraction” in Kennesaw was in full Rambo mode as Atlanta United defeated NISA Team Chattanooga FC in a dominant fashion. The Five Stripes strayed from Fifth and Third Bank Court always unpredictable US Open Cup with a score of 6-0 in the first round of the tournament.
There was some uncertainty ahead of this game after Atlanta United managed to get past two games without scoring, all while dealing with an unending string of injuries. The gates had to be opened at some point, and targets came from everywhere. Ronald Hernandez, Dom Dwyer (x2), Marcelino “Mando” Moreno, Luiz Araujo and Brooks Lennon all contributed to what we hope is seen as a turning point towards more dominant wins going back into the MLS season this week against Inter Miami. The conversation in the post-match presser pointed to exactly that mentality.
On the other hand, the viewer can see this match and correctly think, “Oh, Atlanta United did what they should have done, they beat a lower team without any problems at all. What’s the big deal?” The problem with this thought process is that the viewer themselves will miss out on many of the valuable storylines woven into this young season. For example, it was the first game in which Miles Robinson fully accepted his new responsibility and opportunity as captain of Atlanta United, and what better way to take this new step.
Just try to be like OG lol
– Miles Robinson (@_milesrobinson_) April 21, 2022
Everyone can agree that if Miles Robinson can channel the inner workings of Parke’s football and leadership intelligence, we may go ahead and have Atlanta United etched in a lot of awards to come.
Furthermore, it was fun seeing so much danger across the board from the Five Stripes. Moreno was able to quickly get rid of any demons he might have left from his forbidden attack against Cincinnati a few days earlier by burying one against Chattanooga. He also (again) dropped a few dimes all over the field and was integral in helping to get creative in the final third. Ronald Hernandez played the game he desperately needed to help build some confidence after working his way out of the starting line-up, while Amar Sedic was as busy as ever. Mulrani had a great assist and directed the penalty kick that Moreno buried, Guttmann had assisted Dwyer, then Dwyer got two goals, Luis Araujo scored and once again proved that he is in a class of his own… In other words, this is probably the game that Finally get rid of the sorcery of the collective back of the Five Stripes. The majority of the team was involved in a slew of goals, and here’s hoping to unleash the beast. Speaking of the monster…
No matter what competition Atlanta United plays in, the momentum can come from anywhere. So no, it doesn’t seem right to just keep the story “they overcame an aspect they had to overcome”. That’s not wrong, but it detracts from a lot of the positivity to take from this match, i.e. Five Stripes gaining the confidence to score goals again. If they can grasp that tightly and dive with it in these upcoming matches, it bodes well for both the Open Cup and MLS. Gonzalo Pineda, Alex de Jun and Dom Dwyer all put those sentiments off at their post-match press conference, so feel free to respond to what they said below.
On how effective tonight’s attack is compared to previous matches:
“I felt like we were talking about being more clinical. It happens at times where we struggled in the last two games to score goals. We felt like tonight was a good opportunity to break that record. I think they were more balanced tonight in the final third. We still let some chances go. Because the final touch or the final pass was just not there. I felt like we took every opportunity to try to score goals and the players did it. Sometimes it happens, and you don’t have to fix anything, they know what they have to do in that part. Sometimes it’s just showing An inch or an inch on the other side, but today I felt that the team gained confidence. Hopefully, tonight will be the night that will help us in the future to score goals.”
To score Dwyer tonight, get help and see the striker’s score:
“I felt Dom Dwyer was fantastic. He is an experienced No. 9 in this league and we know he is capable and capable of scoring goals. It was good to see that performance, especially his second goal was fantastic. The first, a very good header at close involvement. Second, I thought he saw the play coming and was looking for that finish. I’m happy for him and his confidence, then he added an assist so I’m very happy with his performance. Also, in the limited minutes I thought Ronaldo Cisneros did very well, chasing, pressing and winning balls in the zones. Dangerous. I asked that of him, so I’m happy with both offers.”
On the intensity of the team from the beginning:
“Yeah, I just told them that. They put in a good intensity today. It’s not easy, no matter who the opponent is, when you make seven changes to put that strength on the field. We have to develop defensively. I felt like we fell behind sometimes, not because of the intensity, But because of a couple of visual cues that we need to understand better. I was happy with how fast we moved the ball from side to side. Especially through the midfielders, when we did that we were feeling the risks. I think it was a solid performance for most of my players.”
Players get some game minutes:
“Yes it was something we tried to do. We thought as coaches how we could win the match without affecting our preparation for Miami, but at the same time respecting the opponent. There has to be a balance in that. I know everyone would say it’s normal to win. It’s not like that. “When we’re on the field it’s 11 against 11. In fact, I would say Rod Underwood is a great coach. I told him after the game and I was very impressed. They were a very good team, with a physical body, they know how to play on the ground and try to play and break us.” They have succeeded many times, so kudos to them. It was a good night to see so many players impacting the game, including some players who haven’t had that many minutes in the past weeks. But also giving some chances to find a beat for Luis Araujo and Emerson Hyndman who They came back from injuries. It was good to see Alex de Jun, who was the only player not to watch minutes in Major League Soccer this year, and now has an Open Cup game. Same for Ronald Hernandez. He was good in so many different ways, to you We, as coaches, will think about the good and the bad.”
On the winning scale for the team:
“It is always difficult when we have long injuries to lose really valuable players, not on the pitch, but off the field as well. So it was important for us to be strong and just show how deep we are and how dynamic we are. We have a really dynamic attack and we were struggling maybe to score. Goals recently, so to go out front and score a goal and finish scoring six is a big deal for us.”
to respect opponents:
“I feel like the best way forward is to respect the opponent and the best thing you can do is give your best, beat them and not worry about them. Give them your best effort. For us, it was just about jumping on that front foot. It was all about Our mentality today. If we had that presence in the field, the pressure, the intensity and the quality would continue.”
In obtaining a record with the first team:
“It’s always nice to be on the team. As a person, I’m fighting every day in training, working my butt. To see it translate into a good game. I feel like whenever my name is called, I’m going to step up. It was important to me and it’s good to be there today.”
On the leadership of Miles Robinson:
“It was funny. Before the match, Gonzalo [Pineda] He called him the captain and he kind of got in there and said, “Okay, let’s go.” He is not a man of much talk, but a leader by example. You see it out there. Every day he fights and does whatever he needs to do. You just enjoy his energy on the court, his confidence and his security. It feels good for all of us.”
For what he took from the game
“Gonzalo [Pineda] Remind her after the match that there are a few things to build on. In every game, there are a few things to build on. Like I said earlier, it’s all about the mentality of going into the game but I feel the last 30 minutes have been very open. The counter was after the counter. We can work on more, just block the counter-attack, push the numbers forward and a little balance in midfield and defence. Other than that, I feel our mentality was good, our strength was good and our quality was good.”
On his second goal:
“I knew the play would build that side. When Jake [Mulraney] He gets one-on-one against anyone, it’s very hard to stop him. He put a great ball inside, so I knew I had to put myself in a good position, put myself in front of the defender. Just timed it well and completed it across goal. I just opened the body. Put the head on it first, then the body after it.”
If he has made a claim on the attacker’s primary website:
“Honestly, all this team needs from me. Of course you want to play every game as a player, but I am here for the team. Whatever is required of me, I will do. I just want to do my best for the team every week.”
What does it mean to him tonight?:
“Honestly, I’m in a good place. Atlanta believed in me, as a club, and signed me a multi-year contract. For me, it’s just trying to perform every week whether I’m asked to start or come off the bench, whatever it is. I’m just in A place where I have the ability to play games and of course my job is to score goals. We needed a good performance tonight from the group and I think we got that. Clean sheets, that’s something we’ve done really well in the last two weeks and we just needed goals. They came in. Tonight’s goals.
About being on Atlanta’s side at the US Open:
“I have to say, when I came out of the last 15 minutes and 20 minutes today, I was watching our team play. It’s nice to watch it. I’m excited and happy to be here and be a part of this club. There are so many talented players. You see, we lost so many players.” “Tonight and we’re still able to do shows like this. Everyone makes an impact, everyone makes a difference. We have a strong group and we’re here for the long haul. We want the trophies, so this is step one.”
If you have a little time, listen as Tommy and I recap the match and talk about everything that happened. And as always, we’d love for any of you to jump into the conversation with us on our DSS Twitter Spaces after every match.