Atlanta will host 2018 MLS All-Star game

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Atlanta will host 2018 MLS All-Star game

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HYOSUB SHIN / AJC
September 16, 2017 Atlanta - Atlanta United fans cheer for their team before an MLS soccer match against the Orlando City SC on Saturday, September 16, 2017. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

Atlanta will host the MLS All-Star game in 2018 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, a person with knowledge of the decision said Wednesday.

A news conference has been scheduled for Monday at the stadium.

Atlanta was one of several cities under consideration by the league to host the event, which in the past few years has matched MLS players against some of the world’s best club teams. The All-Stars, featuring Atlanta United players Miguel Almiron, Michael Parkhurst and Greg Garza, hosted Real Madrid in Chicago in August with more than 61,000 tickets sold.

In previous years, the All-Stars have hosted Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Manchester United, Roma, Chivas, Celtic, Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal, Everton, Fulham and West Ham.

The All-Star game in past years has included numerous fan events and a game featuring some of the league’s best young players taking on the best young players of another club.

Atlanta United is averaging 46,271 tickets sold per game and is on pace to break the league’s average attendance record of 44,247 set by Seattle in 2015.

Atlanta United also holds the record for highest single-game attendance (70,425 tickets sold) in MLS, set against Orlando City and is expected to break that record when it hosts Toronto on Sunday in the regular-season finale. Atlanta United has secured a spot in the playoffs.

Atlanta also is among the 32 cities in the United States, Canada or Mexico being considered by the United Bid Committee as a host site for the 2026 World Cup.

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