Atlanta United’s Parkhurst will again try to win MLS Cup

Atlanta United captain Michael Parkhurst said his ankle will be fine in time for next week’s MLS Cup at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.  Atlanta United will host Portland on Dec. 8. 

Parkhurst said teammate Leandro Gonzalez Pirez rolled onto his ankle late in Thursday’s 1-0 loss to New York Red Bulls in the Eastern Conference finals. Parkhurst was subbed out, but was the first player to be interviewed after the game.

Atlanta United advanced by defeated Red Bulls in the two-game series, 3-1.

“It’s sore right now but it will be all right,” Parkhurst said.

It will be the fifth MLS Cup of Parkhurst’s career. He appeared in three with New England and one with Columbus. He has yet to win a championship.

“You have to take advantage of the opportunity,” he said. “That’s what I keep telling these guys. You never know when you’ll get another chance. We have to take advantage of the opportunity.

“Just because we beat the best team in the regular season and we are playing at home, it doesn’t mean anything. I did it in 2015. We came here and beat the Red Bulls with Columbus. We hosted the MLS Cup and we lost. There are no guarantees. We have to show up and have just as good a game on Saturday.”

Parkhurst said he doesn’t care which team Atlanta United plays. He just wants to win a title and help Atlanta as a city forget some of its sports history.

“We hear a lot about the 28-3, and I think a lot of fans were nervous going up 3-0 so we are proud that we get to bring a championship game to them and hopefully we can reverse that,” Parkhurst said.

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