Atlanta United have not been able to consolidate their first win of the season, suffering another disappointing result against FC Dallas, 2-1, in Saturday's Mercedes-Benz stadium. There were bad things that happened, but also good ones. Let's talk about it.
Not crazy. Just disappointed.
Losing is zero. There is no way to get around it. And while I hate to apologize, there is no way to think that Atlanta United played well during the majority of this game. They created many opportunities but were constantly frustrated by a mix of Jesse Gonzalez standing on his proverbial head and bad finishes. We are not aware of official Opta xG numbers for the matches just after, but if I had to guess, the Atlanta number would look pretty good.
Advanced analyzes favoring Atlanta will not help most fans sleep better. Another result was still to the detriment of the team and the dynamics of the promising performance of last weekend in New England has almost evaporated.
What went well?
Let's focus on the positive aspects we can draw from this game. Ezequiel Barco was once again very good. He hit the woodwork several times and drew a handful of dangerous free kicks thanks to his nifty dribble around the box. He was again the best performer of the team that day.
Barco seems to have not only improved his game in general, but also managed to get regularity. If any optimism can be drawn from this loss, that is it. Now, we just need Josef Martinez and Pity Martinez to find their form.
That's what did not go well
It may be a shock, but I will not blame Frank de Boer for this one. He set up a solid lineup and made some correct substitutions. The team created chances. He can not put the ball in the net himself.
It is perfectly normal to offer attacks-oriented training at home. It's something that I applaud. However, this will always leave you subject to counterattack. FC Dallas had the perfect game plan. Something that made me think of Ben Olsen who had been drooling and countering to death Tata Martino in 2017 (I still have nightmares). The counter defense is something you will need to work on.
Football is like that sometimes
Football is the biggest sport in the world. Football can also be extremely frustrating sometimes. This match was one of those games you just have to forget. The team played well but they did not make it. There will be much better days to come if they continue to create the amount of chances they have in the last two games. Keep your head up.