The Atlanta United Soccer Club (previously known as Atlanta United Football Club) was founded in 2013 and made its debut in the 2015 MLS season. The team plays in the Eastern Conference of Major League Soccer (MLS). Its home stadium, “ATL UTD STADIUM”, has a 25,000-seat capacity. The club made a name for itself by becoming the first-ever team in MLS history to score after just five minutes of play. Since then, the club has gone on to record seven such scores – including a league-record four in a single match. This is in addition to five goals in the last five games alone.
Despite its rich history, the team has only been to one CONCACAF Champions League (CCL) final (lost 0-1 to Club América in 2016), one MLS Cup final (lost 1-0 to the Seattle Sounders in 2019), and one U.S. Open Cup final (lost 0-1 to the New England Revolution in 2019).
This year marks the second anniversary of the Atlanta United Soccer Club. To commemorate this significant event, we present to you the top five moments from ATL UTD STADIUM’s history.
5. Opening Ceremony
The very first match at ATL UTD STADIUM was an incredible experience. The atmosphere was electric, and it had not even been five minutes since the final whistle had blown. The fans had really got into the game, celebrating wildly as if they had just won the Cup. In fact, the celebration lasted so long that it caused chaos in the stadium as some patrons attempted to leave and others remained seated. It was an incredible sight to behold, a stadium full of people celebrating a win.
The match was also noteworthy for another reason: it was the first-ever competitive match played under the lights at the new stadium. A couple of nights earlier, the stadium had undergone a $37 million expansion and renovation project that made it ready for the occasion. The match was played under the glare of the lights, with the score displayed on the front screen. This innovation made it easier for fans to follow the game even if they were located in different areas of the stadium.
4. First Five-Minute Scoring Streak
There is probably no greater accomplishment in MLS than becoming the first team to score after just five minutes of play. The match was not even close to over when the Galaxy found the net for the first time in the 5th minute. A few minutes later, the Dynamo scored an own goal to make it 2-0. Then, the rest, as they say, is history. The match included five consecutive goals, with Atlanta United scoring four times in the first half. The club’s previous record for the fastest four goals was three matches.
The feat put Atlanta United on the map, and the club went on to become one of the most popular teams in MLS. The team has already eclipsed the 20,000-seat mark in attendance three times this year alone.
3. BTSG To Gaol
If the “Batman vs. Superman” cinematic matchup was to become real, it would take place in the form of a football match. The rivalry between these two titans of industry is centuries old, and their continued presence in the sports world is a testament to that. In the summer of 2019, BTSG, the brainchild of these two business titans and the owners of the Detroit Football Club (previously known as the Detroit Revolution), unveiled its new brand and logo – Gaol.
The name comes from the Gaelic word for revenge, and it is an ode to the club’s two previous logos, both of which were inspired by Batman’s legendary detective mode. The new BTSG logo is described as a “combination of the modern and the traditional that pays homage to Batman’s detective roots and the dark knight’s nemesis, the Joker”. One of the most interesting aspects of this rivalry is that it has transcended the world of football and entered the mainstream culture. Several pieces of merchandise were made available to the public, with Joker and Batman-related products outselling those for the regular MLS teams by a ratio of nearly 2-to-1. The match between the Gotham City Football Club and the Detroit Football Club is the centerpiece of the BTSG collection, made up of t-shirts, hoodies, and hats. The merchandise is now available for purchase at the teams’ respective websites.
2. First Win In The East
The 2019 MLS season was the first under the new “Eastern Conference” format. As an Eastern Conference team, Atlanta United automatically qualified for the playoffs, finishing in second place in the conference. This was a major milestone for the team, and it broke a string of six consecutive MLS Cup appearances by western Conference teams. This feat was all the more impressive considering that the 2019 season was technically the team’s first-ever full season in MLS. Prior to this year, Atlanta United had only ever participated in the MLS Cup and U.S. Open Cup. The Eastern Conference format was created so that teams could play more often, which in turn could lead to more exciting matches. This year’s MLS schedule was considered “the perfect recipe for an explosive season” by commissioner Goodell.
After a nail-biting 1-0 victory over New York City FC in the Eastern Conference Finals, Atlanta United will face Liverpool in the 2019 MLS Cup.
1. First Match
The very first official match at the new, expanded Atlanta United Stadium was a 2-2 draw against the San Jose Earthquakes. It was a sunny day in Atlanta, with temperatures approaching 90 degrees Fahrenheit. The atmosphere at the match was electric, and it was clear from the opening kick that this was going to be a memorable day for both the fans and the players. The match was played under the lights for the very first time, with the score displayed on multiple large screens. A video board was also used to display pre-game scenes from the movie “Shazam!”, which was being screened in honor of the occasion.
This year will mark the second anniversary of the Atlanta United Soccer Club. To commemorate this significant event, we present to you the top five moments from ATL UTD STADIUM’s history.