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After finishing 11th in the East in 2022, the 2018 MLS Cup champions have now missed the playoffs in two of the last three seasons. It’s been a particularly disappointing stretch since the club consistently sits in the top five for both net transfer spend and wages (Atlanta have made four of the six most expensive incoming transfers in league history).

That said, 2023 marks the start of a new era for the club. Garth Lagerwey arrives as Club President, bringing a record of trophies (three MLS Cups and Concacaf Champions League) and success from his last two tenures in RSL and Seattle. Going the other way is Josef Martinez, as the club's all-time leading goal scorer left for Inter Miami. The exact style of play is still TBD, because head coach Gonzalo Pineda rarely had a healthy squad in 2022 to instill his ideas.

Reference Links

MLS Schedule
Club Site

Key Players

Thiago Almada, AM/W
Miles Robinson, CB

Attacking Phase

Clarity Low
Consistency Medium


Build Out
Shape 2-1-2-3, FBs low
Tendencies Short first pass to draw opponent forward; CBs want to find passes on the ground with first look to break lines to attackers in the pockets and a quick check down to the DM; two CMs will stay fluid and quick to drop for support; the three AMs have freedom to find any space; overall, the ideas are more fluid than structured, trusting talent of the midfielders to find solutions
Pressured Progression
Shape 3-2-2-1, LB stays to form 3CB; RB and LW in wide channels; ST pinning CBs
Tendencies Priority to play through pivot, but second CM quick to drop to provide support; quick look to find Ws tucking into half-space pockets
Controlled Progression
Shape 2-2-3-1, FBs and Ws switching between inside and outside channels, with Ws given priority; often FBs inside, Ws high and wide
Tendencies Play through CMs, try to find AM (Almada) or 1v1s wide for Ws; play can be slow and labored, with each player looking to create high value on each pass and the knock-on effect from it
Chance Creation No clear tendencies; talent driven

Defending Phase

Clarity Low
Consistency Low


Shape 4-4-2, STs to CBs, CMs man-to-man
Tendencies CBs aggressive to bump forward (Robinson’s pace allows for margin of error); simple approach without disguises, tends to lack urgency
Shape 4-4-2
Tendencies Eager to bounce out of block with STs to CB; after pressing trigger, CMs go man-to-man and players bump forward
Shape No identifiable structure

Data Variables

Coming soon.

Subjective Variables




Depth Chart