Atlanta United FC, commonly known as Atlanta United, is an American professional soccer club based in Atlanta, Georgia that competes in Major League Soccer (MLS) as a member of the league’s Eastern Conference.
Atlanta United Youth Development System
On November 14, 2017, Atlanta United announced that they would be launching a reserve team to compete in the United Soccer League, the second division of American soccer. Club president Darren Eales said that the new team was launched to “bridge the gap between our best in class academy and our First Team.” The team, Atlanta United 2, began play in the Eastern Conference of what is now called USL Championship in the 2018 season. To learn more about Atlanta United 2, click here.
Atlanta United operate a youth academy that competes in the United States Soccer Development Academy. The academy began play in the 2016–2017 USSDA season and has seven youth teams: U-19, U-17, U-16, U-15, U-14, U-13 and U-12. Participation in the academy is free for all players and participants are eligible to be signed to the Atlanta United first team as a Homegrown Player. The club has signed six players to first team contracts and three players to reserve team contracts since the academy launched.
In addition to its USSDA programs, the academy also operates a soccer development program to identify players playing for local youth clubs and promote them to the academy. The club also operates the Atlanta United Regional Development School, a pre-academy feeder program for players aged 8–14 to provide training and development for advanced local players and identify potential academy players, as well as the United Juniors Program, a special development program to provide supplemental development for U-12 players playing for other Atlanta-area youth clubs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Source for FAQs from here.
What is the Atlanta United Academy?
- Atlanta United’s Academy is where the some of the nations most talented soccer players come to train and play with the goal of signing for Atlanta United and earning a professional contract. The Atlanta United Academy also assists players in pursuing opportunities to play collegiate soccer at top universities across the United States.
How is the Atlanta United Academy different than other clubs in the area?
Unlike other clubs, we are a professional soccer club that competes at the highest level in the United States and as such can offer the following:
- Coaching, guidance, and evaluation from highly qualified from the Academy technical staff.
- Invitations to top level domestic & international tournaments with some of the world’s best clubs.
- Access to cutting edge Sports Performance technology & equipment
What teams will Atlanta United’s Academy have?
Atlanta United currently has 7 academy teams: U-12, U-13, U-14, U-15, U-16, U-17 and U-19.
Is Atlanta United’s Academy free?
The Academy is free for all selected players and has many additional benefits. Such benefits include a comprehensive, experienced and qualified staff, equipment package for all full-time players (including full uniform and the latest adidas footwear), and other unique and exclusive opportunities.
Where does Atlanta United’s Academy train?
The Academy trains and competes out of the same facility as the first team and ATLUTD 2 at the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground located in Marietta, GA.
Atlanta United offers a variety of Training Programs, and are open to youth players of all levels and abilities from beginners to advanced. Programs offered range from position-specific training to skills clinics to camps to a tryout-based program: Regional Development School.
To register for training or learn more about their camps, clinics, or Regional Development School, click here.
Atlanta United Academy Player Recruitment
The academy recruitment process is managed by Atlanta United’s scouting network and invitations will be sent to identified players to come to the club on trial. Club directors & coaches may also recommend players by contacting [email protected].
To submit an application, click here. This link will take you to the official Atlanta United website where you can apply. (Updated MARCH 2022)
-Above application recruitment link is no longer active. We will leave the link incase Atlanta United brings the recruitment webpage backup and you can be the first to find it here. (Updated MARCH 2022)
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Atlanta United Overview
Atlanta United was founded in 2014 and became an MLS expansion franchise in 2017 as the league’s twenty-second team. For the first time, a Major League Soccer (MLS) team is based in Atlanta, where they share the Mercedes-Benz Stadium with the city’s NFL team, the Atlanta Falcons. Arthur Blank, a co-founder of The Home Depot, owns both businesses. United States Soccer League (MLS) side Atlanta United 2 is owned by the club as well (USLC).
When Atlanta United was founded, Gerardo “Tata” Martino was named the team’s first head coach and led them to a playoff berth in their first season. The following year, the team won MLS Cup 2018, their first championship.
Atlanta has one of the largest fanbases in MLS, and they have set multiple league records for the highest single-match and average attendance levels in the 2018 regular season. To put that into perspective, in 2019 Forbes projected that the team was worth $500 million.
Atlanta United History
Bobby Dodd Stadium hosted 55,297 fans for Atlanta’s inaugural regular season MLS game on March 5, 2017. In a 2–1 loss against the New York Red Bulls, Yamil Asad scored the first goal in the team’s existence. A week later, they beat Minnesota United FC 6–1 on the road for their first victory. In front of a sold-out Bobby Dodd Stadium on March 18, 2017, the squad recorded its first home win, defeating Chicago Fire, who were reduced to ten men in the eleventh minute, 4–0. Averaging more than 48,000 fans per match at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the team broke attendance records for single-season averages for a U.S. soccer team and a non-doubleheader MLS game after moving there. After tying for third in the Eastern Conference, Atlanta became only the third MLS expansion team to make the playoffs in their first season. Due to tie-breaking regulations, Atlanta was seeded fourth. A record-breaking 67,221 fans showed up to watch their club play Columbus Crew in the opening round of the MLS playoffs. In the penalty shootout, Columbus triumphed 3–1 to eliminate Atlanta after a scoreless 120 minutes of play.
Atlanta finished 2nd in the Eastern Conference and won the Supporters Shield in their second season. For the second year in a row, the team made it to the playoffs, beating New York City FC and the New York Red Bulls to reach MLS Cup 2018. The Atlanta Hawks earned their first major sports championship since 1995 when the Atlanta Braves triumphed in the World Series. By virtue of their triumph in the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League, Atlanta has earned a spot in the 2019 CONCACAF Champions League. Also, Martino was able to cap off a successful two-year career with the team by announcing his departure for the 2019 season earlier in the season. The league MVP was Josef Martnez, and the Coach of the Year was Martino. Atlanta defeated Club América 3–2 in the second edition of the Campeones Cup to win the trophy and become the first American club to overcome a Mexican side in a cup match.
After winning the MLS Cup, Tata Martino stepped down as manager of the Mexico national team to take over the reins at the club. Frank de Boer was hired to replace him. De Boer guided Atlanta United to victories in both the US Open Cup and the Campeones Cup, although they were knocked out of the MLS Playoffs by Toronto FC after overcoming New England Revolution and Philadelphia Union. United had a promising start to the 2020 season but the pandemic outbreak forced the season to be postponed. All three of United’s matches at Orlando’s MLS Is Back Tournament were lost following an almost four-month absence. De Boer and Atlanta United agreed to part ways after their team’s exit from the MLS is Back Tournament. Stephen Glass took over as interim manager following the start of league play in August.
Colors and Badge
He claimed that the name, logo, and “a color scheme that’ll go with the red and black with… gold” will all be decided by the public (the colors used by the Falcons when they launched in 1966). In Sports Illustrated, on June 25, 2015, it was announced that Atlanta United FC would be the name of the city’s new MLS team. On July 7, the team’s name was officially announced. According to Atlanta United president Darren Eales, the name was decided after a poll of the team’s supporters, and it included terms that the respondents felt best described the future squad. Founders’ Group meeting will still go place on July 7 and the new team’s logo will be introduced, according to Eales.
Name, logo, and colors of the squad were revealed on July 7, 2015. There is a “A” in the center, a nod to the city’s Olympic legacy and the city’s seal. An “A” in black and red stands for the five core values of our organization: teamwork, respect for each other’s contributions to the group as a whole, excellence, and new ideas. Red, or “Victory Red,” as the team refers to it, symbolizes the squad’s pride and enthusiasm, while gold represents the team’s strength and power (for a commitment to excellence). The five stripes on the team’s first home jerseys have led to the nickname “The Five Stripes,” which has stuck.
This year, Atlanta United debuted a new primary kit following the club’s first MLS championship in February 2019. “Stars and Stripes” is the term given to the new design, which was produced by Adidas. The five wide stripes on the front have been replaced with nine thinner ones, the socks have been changed from black to red, and a gold star sits atop the team’s crest.
Stadium and Facilities
The Atlanta Falcons and the Atlanta Falcons share Mercedes-Benz Stadium. In order to provide a more intimate setting for soccer matches, the club regularly closes the upper deck of the stadium. The capacity of Mercedes-Benz Stadium is typically 42,500. During the first season, the squad employed the curtains for six of its nine home games. It can host 71,000 people when enlarged to its maximum capacity, with standing room for an additional 73,019 people (based on attendance at MLS Cup 2018). The stands are retractable to accommodate a wider field and provide better sight lines for spectators. As soon as Atlanta was announced as an MLS expansion team, Blank pledged, “There will never be an MLS game in Atlanta when NFL lines are shown on the field” – a historical subject of contention for teams who have played in stadiums primarily used for American football.
After announcing plans for training facilities, academy facilities, and a sporting headquarters in Decatur in August of that year, the club However, a feasibility study revealed that the site on Memorial Drive was unworkable, and the plans for the facility were scrapped in November 2015. Instead, the facility was constructed on a 33-acre site in Marietta’s Franklin Gateway. It was officially launched as the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground on April 11th, 2017, after a $60 million dollar investment. First and reserve team locker rooms, a full service dining hall, and sports science facilities including a gymnasium and two hydrotherapy plunge pools are all housed in the club’s sporting headquarters in a 30,000 square foot structure. A 2,500-seat stadium is one of six outdoor training fields at the complex. An extra 17.9 acres (6.9 hectares) of city-owned land was sold to the club on March 28th, 2019, in exchange for a five-year extension of its lease on an already existing training facility.
Terminus Legion, Footie Mob, and Faction are Atlanta United’s four fan groups listed on their official website. Graphic designer Matt Stigall founded the Terminus Legion fan organization in March 2011 to demonstrate that Atlantans will support soccer despite the city’s reputation as a “lazy sports town.” Because of Atlanta’s long history as a locomotive hub, the group’s moniker, “Cow Catchers & Railroad Ties,” was inspired by the original name given to the city when it was originally inhabited. More than 500 people have signed up for the expansion team since it was awarded, and Stigall said the group would support all Atlanta soccer, including NASL and youth teams and go to Orlando City matches, in the months building up to 2017.
Founded in 2014, Footie Mob is a fan group based on the Atlanta hip-hop act Goodie Mob. Before the game, the club is noted for its pre-game tailgating and for infusing Atlanta’s music scene into the supporter community. More than 29,000 season tickets had been reserved by the new MLS team’s fans as of December 2015. More than 36,000 fans had signed up for season tickets by the end of last year. Atlanta was dubbed the “Black Soccer Capital of America” by Bleacher Report in 2018 because of the unusually large number of African-American fans of Atlanta United. There were more than 69,256 people in attendance for Atlanta United’s match versus Orlando City on September 16 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, a record for a single match at Atlanta United’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The previous record holder was LA Galaxy, who sold 69,255 tickets.
For the first time, Atlanta became the first MLS team to draw more than 70,000 fans for an un-doubleheader match. According to the team’s announcement made on October 5th, they have sold over 70,456 tickets for their match versus Toronto FC on October 22nd. Seattle Sounders and New York Cosmos had been holding these two records, but now the team has broken both of them thanks to its record-breaking season in MLS and in professional American soccer. It was the second time in league history that a single-match attendance record was broken, this time by 71,874. A total of 48,200 fans attended Atlanta’s MLS regular season games this year – more than any other MLS team, including English teams Everton and Chelsea. On March 11, 2018, the team sold 72,035 tickets for their home opener against D.C. United, breaking the league’s single-match attendance record for the third time. Another record was achieved on June 30, 2018, with 71,932 fans in attendance, more than any other soccer game that day in the world, including the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, which was taking place at the time. A record-breaking crowd of 72,243 saw the club play on July 15th, 2018, a league first. Atlanta’s average regular-season attendance in 2018 was 53,002, beating their 2017 record and becoming the team the first in Major League Soccer to average over 50,000 fans. Atlanta United won the 2018 MLS Cup in front of 73,019 fans, the greatest non-doubleheader crowd in league history, on December 8th of that year. The team’s home game against the LA Galaxy on August 3rd, 2019, drew 72,548 fans, another single-match attendance record.
Atlanta United currently maintains the top ten regular-season single-game attendance records in Major League Soccer (MLS) as of March 7, 2020. The Golden Spike was introduced by Atlanta United in their first season as a tribute to the city’s railroad history. Supporters carry a golden railroad spike signed by the team and their fans into the stadium, where a VIP will hammer it into position. After each game, the player voted as the game’s MVP hits a spike. Hip hop singers 2 Chainz, Yung Joc, and Waka Flocka; country musician Zac Brown; retired Atlanta Braves great Andruw Jones; and Atlanta basketball players Tiffany Hayes and Dennis Schröder were among the celebrities who participated in the Golden Spike tradition in 2017. “United We Conquer” by Atlanta-based rapper Archie Eversole was also a part of the Golden Spike tradition and would subsequently be used as a rap anthem for the club. T-Pain, Edgar Davids, Brian Jordan, Evander Holyfield, Jeezy, Killer Mike, and Big Boi were among the famous celebrities who took part in the 2018 edition. Arthur Blank, the team’s owner, pounded the Spike during MLS Cup 2018. Rappers Goodie Mob and Dikembe Mutombo joined wrestling legend Ric Flair and Hollywood icon Ron Howard in celebrating the tradition this year.
The state’s largest city, Atlanta, is located in the state’s capital. It is also the 37th most populated city in the United States, with a projected 2019 population of 506,811 people. More over 6 million people call Atlanta home, making it the tenth largest metropolitan region in the United States in terms of population. Located in Fulton County, Atlanta is the state’s most populated city. DeKalb County is a neighboring county to the east of the city. With its location in the Appalachian Mountains, the city is the highest-altitude large city in the eastern United States.
A total of 134.0 square miles (347.1 km2) of Atlanta’s total area is made up of land covering 133.2 square miles (344.9 km2), and water covering 0.85 square miles (2.2 km2). The city is nestled in the Appalachian Mountains’ foothills. Atlanta is the tallest major city east of the Mississippi at 1,050 feet (320 meters) above mean sea level. The Eastern Continental Divide is where Atlanta is located. The Atlantic Ocean receives rainwater that falls on the south and east sides of the divide, while the Gulf of Mexico receives rainwater that falls on the north and west sides of the divide. The Chattahoochee River, which flows through Atlanta, is part of the ACF River Basin. Natural environment has been protected in large part by the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, which borders the city’s extreme northwestern side.
Climate | Weather
With four distinct seasons and abundant precipitation throughout the year, Atlanta’s climate is humid subtropical (Cfa)n, typical of the Upland South. The city is located in USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 8a, with the northern and western suburbs moving to USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 7b. The city’s height helps to keep temperatures from becoming oppressively hot and humid during the summer. In contrast to the state’s middle and southern regions, where winters are mild but unpredictable, the northern half of the state is prone to snowstorms, even though they are few and far between. Temperatures can rise to spring-like levels when warm air from the Gulf of Mexico blows in, while cold air from the Arctic can cause lows in the teens (around 7 to 12 degrees Celsius).
July has an average temperature of 80.2 °F (26.8 °C), with an average high temperature of 90 °F (32 °C) occurring 44 days out of the year. During the month of January, the average temperature is 43.5 degrees Fahrenheit (6.4 degrees Celsius). There are 40 nights a year when temperatures drop to or below freezing, however the last time that happened was on January 6, 2014, when it was 12 °F (3 °C). On February 13, 1899, the temperature was 9 °F (23 °C). On June 30, 2012, it was 106 °F (41 °C). During the summer months, dew points range from 63.7 °F (17.6 °C) to 67.8 °F (19.9 °C) in June and July, respectively.
Atlanta, like the rest of the Southeast, receives a lot of rain throughout the year, but spring and early fall are the driest months. The average annual rainfall is 49.7 inches (1,260 millimeters) and the average annual snowfall is 2.9 inches (7.4 centimeters). On January 23, 1940, there was a single snowfall of around 10 inches (25 cm). However, ice storms, such as the one that hit on January 7, 1973, are more problematic than snowfalls. In the city proper, tornadoes are rare, however on March 14, 2008, an EF2 tornado damaged important downtown Atlanta structures.