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Atlanta United
Major League Soccer
Apr 21, 2024 at 12.30am UK
Mercedes-Benz Stadium
FC Cincinnati

1 - 2

Almada (59')
Fortune (68')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Orellano (62'), Acosta (64')
Robinson (83'), Bucha (90+2'), Bucha (89'), Acosta (90+2')

Preview: Atlanta United vs. FC Cincinnati - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Major League Soccer clash between Atlanta United and FC Cincinnati, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Two teams looking to break into the top four of the MLS Eastern Conference meet on Saturday as Atlanta United play host to FC Cincinnati.

There is just one point between these teams at the moment, and there is little to split them after the opening section of the season.

Match preview

Atlanta United forward Giorgos Giakoumakis (7) celebrates on March 10, 2024© Reuters

Atlanta United might be one place below their opponents this weekend, but three points would not only guarantee they leapfrog them but could push them as high as third, depending on other results.

Considering how tight the league table is in the early stages of the season, a string of consistent results for the Five Stripes has the potential to have a huge impact.

Gonzalo Pineda's men head into Saturday with three consecutive games without a loss, although their previous two matches have both ended in draws.

The most recent one finished 2-2 against Philadelphia Union, a result that will have frustrated the Five Stripes fans after they watched their team throw away a two-goal lead.

Despite that, Atlanta should have plenty of confidence for this weekend, considering they are yet to be beaten at home this season.

FC Cincinnati defender Miles Robinson (12) celebrates scoring on March 3, 2024© Reuters

Cincinnati will attempt to change that, and they have been slightly stronger on the road throughout this campaign, even though they have been dealing with a lack of goals.

The visitors have only scored six times across four away matches, an area that Pat Noonan will concentrate on fixing for the rest of the season.

Despite the lack of goals, the Orange and Blue have picked up consistent results across their opening eight fixtures, which has led them to fifth place heading into this weekend.

A victory could see them climb as high as second in the Eastern Conference, but they will need to put forward a more robust performance than last weekend when CF Montreal defeated them 2-1.

With that result marking two losses on the bounce and three without a win, the pressure will be heating up this weekend as Cincinnati focus on getting their season back on track.

Atlanta United Major League Soccer form:

FC Cincinnati Major League Soccer form:

FC Cincinnati form (all competitions):

Team News

FC Cincinnati head coach Pat Noonan before the game on March 3, 2024© Reuters

Atlanta will continue without Jamal Thiare and Derrick Williams, who are expected to be sidelined for another three weeks.

They are joined in the medical room by Stian Gregersen, who is currently recovering from meniscus surgery, which is set to keep him out of action for a while.

The visitors also have injury concerns to contend with as goalkeeper Roman Celentano is still not fit enough to feature, but is closing in on a return to action, while London Aghedo is also unavailable.

Yuya Kubo should retain his place in the team after scoring in consecutive matches for the first time since joining Cincinnati, bringing plenty of confidence in front of goal this weekend.

Atlanta United possible starting lineup:
Guzan; Lennon, Cobb, Abram, Wiley; Muyumba, Slisz; Lobzhanidze, Almada, Etienne; Thiare

FC Cincinnati possible starting lineup:
Kann; Hagglund, Miazga, Murphy; Yedlin, Kubo, Bucha, Nwobodo; Acosta, Boupendza; Baird

SM words green background

We say: Atlanta United 1-1 FC Cincinnati

There is very little to split these two teams in the league table and that is something that could end up being reflected in the match this weekend.

Cincinnati has struggled in recent weeks and that is something they need to turn around as soon as possible, but Atlanta's strengths could lead to them sharing the spoils.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Eastern Conference

1Inter MiamiInter Miami16104238211734
2FC CincinnatiCincinnati1510322314933
3New York City FCNY City158251916326
4Columbus Crew146622113824
5New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls146532521423
6Charlotte FCCharlotte FC156451413122
8Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia144642521418
9DC United154652125-418
10Nashville SCNashville143741720-316
11Orlando City144461522-716
12Atlanta UnitedAtlanta143471717013
13CF MontrealMontreal143471731-1413
14Chicago Fire152581427-1311
15New England RevolutionNew England132110926-177

Western Conference

1Real Salt LakeSalt Lake1585230171329
2Minnesota UnitedMinnesota Utd137422417725
3Los Angeles GalaxyLA Galaxy156722722525
4Los Angeles FCLos Angeles147342519624
5Austin FCAustin156542018223
6Colorado RapidsColorado156452726122
7Vancouver WhitecapsVancouver145452017319
8Houston DynamoHouston145361315-218
9Seattle SoundersSeattle154561818017
10Portland TimbersPortland154472830-216
11St Louis City143742022-216
13Sporting Kansas CityKansas142572226-411
14San Jose EarthquakesEarthquakes1532102334-1111

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