Atlanta United fans hoist a tifo to begin the match against the Portland Timbers for the MLS Cup at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Atlanta United won, 2-0.
Photo: Curtis Compton/
Photo: Curtis Compton/

Atlanta United will begin defense of MLS Cup at D.C. United

MLS champion Atlanta United will open the 2019 season at D.C. United at 6 p.m. March 3 at Audi Field.

The league released each team’s home openers on Thursday.

The Five Stripes will play their first home game against Cincinnati, the league’s newest expansion team, at 5 p.m. March 10 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

The rest of league schedule will be released near the MLS Draft on Jan. 11.

This will be the second consecutive season that Atlanta United will open on the road. It was beaten 4-0 at Houston to open the 2018 season.

Atlanta United will have already played two games in the CONCACAF Champions League by the time it travels to D.C. United. Atlanta United split two games with D.C. United, which features Wayne Rooney and Luciano Acosta, last season. D.C. United finished the 2018 season with 51 points and was beaten by Columbus in the first round of the playoffs.

Cincinnati recently completed a trade with Atlanta United for fullback Greg Garza. The team also features centerback Kendall Waston, formerly of Vancouver, striker Fanendo Adi, formerly of Portland, and striker Darren Mattocks, formerly of D.C. United.

Atlanta United finished the 2018 season with 69 points, tied for the second-most in league history. The club set numerous league attendance records and features the league’s Golden Boot winner and MVP, Josef Martinez. 

According to Atlanta United, a limited number of tickets are available for the home game against Cincinnati. The team website has details. Single-game tickets will go on sale after the entire schedule is released.

The team has yet to announce when it will honor the team as 2018 MLS Cup winners.

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