Feb 23, 2024 - Sports

Your 2024 Atlanta United season preview

A soccer playing wearing a red-and-black vertical stripe jersey attempts to kick a ball

Atlanta United forward Giorgos Giakoumakis led the team in scoring this past season. Photo: Austin McAfee/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Atlanta United's back. And the beloved Five Stripes are banking on new faces filling the gaps and regaining the glory.

What's happening: The hugely popular team's regular season begins Saturday at 2pm with an away game against Columbus Crew.

  • Here's what you need to know to start the season.

Catch up quick: Atlanta United finished sixth in the Eastern Conference and fell in the first round of the MLS Cup playoffs this past season. It failed to qualify for the tournament in 2022.

  • Considering the team's breakout success after taking the field in 2017, it's not where the ride-or-die fans or team want to be.

State of play: New faces joining star players like Thiago Almada and Giorgos Giakoumakis include Stian Gregersen (centerback), Bartosz Slisz (midfielder) and Josh Cohen (goalkeeper).

  • Cohen, who's played the past four seasons on Israel's Maccabi Haifa FC, is one to watch. He'll be competing for playing time against longtime goalkeeper Brad Guzan..
  • No longer with the squad this season is veteran center back Miles Robinson, who bid the team farewell to join FC Cincinnati.

What they're saying: "For the first time in forever, they've got a roster whose pieces fit together in a coherent way," writes MLSsoccer.com. "On paper they're not just a collection of talent, but an actual team."

Zoom in: Coach Gonzalo Pineda should beef up defense, a weak spot for the squad, write Five Stripe Final's J. Sam Jones and Joe Patrick.

Worth watching: "A New Dawn," the second season of the team's behind-the-scenes streaming series "Rooted in the Stripes." Available for free on YouTube.

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