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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 Miami25165456391753
2FC CincinnatiCincinnati25153744331148
3Columbus Crew23127447222543
4New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls251011442311141
5New York City FCNY City2511593630638
6Charlotte FCCharlotte FC2510783027337
7Orlando City259793938134
9Atlanta UnitedAtlanta2577113536-128
10Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia2569104542327
11CF MontrealMontreal2569103449-1527
12Nashville SCNashville2568112639-1326
13DC United2568113550-1526
14Chicago Fire2567123042-1225
15New England RevolutionNew England2372142347-2423

Western Conference

1Los Angeles GalaxyLA Galaxy26147550361449
2Los Angeles FCLos Angeles24145548301847
3Real Salt LakeSalt Lake25128551341744
4Colorado RapidsColorado2612595043741
5Vancouver WhitecapsVancouver2411584335838
6Houston DynamoHouston2410773530537
7Seattle SoundersSeattle2510783429537
8Portland TimbersPortland2510695042836
9Minnesota UnitedMinnesota Utd2596104041-133
10Austin FCAustin2587102837-931
12Sporting Kansas CityKansas2666144152-1124
13St Louis City25411103246-1423
14San Jose EarthquakesEarthquakes2542193161-3014

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