Smile Through The Pain
Atlanta United falls 1-0 to the league best New England Revolution. This results adds to a club record of an eight game winless streak, where its last win came in the home thriller against Montreal on May 15th. It's been over two months now. You don't need to come here to already know the news of the feud between manager Gabriel Heinze and Josef Martinez, but Heinze's stubbornness shows once again in starting Cubo Torres over homegrown Jackson Conway. Conway has scored more goals for the club in 62 minutes of play than Torres has in almost a year of being a Five Stripe.
New England's goal came off a fall by striker Adam Buksa that led to a perfect setup for Gustavo Bou. This came easy due to a combination between George Campbell playing too slow and Amar Sejdic losing his mark. In terms of Atlanta players, goalkeeper Alec Kann couldn't do anything about that goal and he was fine, really untouched, for the rest of the match. Anton Walkes, captaining his second game for the club, wasn't really tested too much. Alan Franco, finally back from injury, made some very questionable passes outside the back. Thankfully none of them turned into an opposing goal, but still deserves to be brought up. George Campbell was shaky, but he'll get better with time and opportunities. Brooks Lennon and Jake Mulraney were both pretty quiet in the wingback spots. Besides that lost mark, Sejdic was smooth on the ball in his debut. Moving forward he should only be a depth option in this midfield. Marcelino Moreno was a bright spot in the team today, who I still have believed in even through some critics. Moreno showed good pace, plenty of balls to put his teammates in scoring situations, and almost even nailed a far strike early off a corner. The only other bright spot was Machop Chol and his runs in the final third. Even if his teammates couldn't pick him out, his mind was on the right idea. Erik Lopez didn't produce much. As much as the fan base has drilled Cubo Torres for his play, you can't deny his work rate. Maybe that's why Heinze continues to choose him in his starting 11 as he's stated before he chooses the players that will go to battle for him.
Overall, our attack didn't present much to a goalkeeper that hasn't had a clean sheet since 2018. I am getting a little tired of our only attack being to play it out wide, cross it and hope for the best. The battle between Heinze and Josef needs to be addressed to the fans because they deserve it and this seems like it won't be solved any time soon. Two passionate characters are clashing, it's going to be awhile unless the front office acts first. It's okay to be club first but still show frustration to the front office on the situation. Heinze was my realistic dream hire last fall. I'm not saying I'm giving up on him yet, but it hasn't gone well at all so far. This is a big situation for the club on all levels that will swing the direction moving forward. For now, I will stay optimistic. For the rest of you fans, I will not judge if you aren't. We truly deserve better. There's not much to add, we'll see you back Wednesday in Cincinnati. We also need to sign another attacking piece, which Felipe Cardenas of The Athletic reported is on the top of the club's focus this window. Until then you can stay with me... just keep smiling through the pain.