Atlanta United learns site of Champions League game

Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan saves the ball during the first half of the match between Atlanta United FC and Club America in the quarterfinal round of the 2020 Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, Mexico, on March 11, 2020. (Photo by Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United)
Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan saves the ball during the first half of the match between Atlanta United FC and Club America in the quarterfinal round of the 2020 Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, Mexico, on March 11, 2020. (Photo by Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United)

Credit: Brad Guzan

Credit: Brad Guzan

Atlanta United now knows where it will play the second leg of its Champions League series against Club America after CONCACAF announced on Tuesday that the game will be played in Orlando in Exploria Stadium.

What the team doesn’t yet know is which players it will have to try to overturn its 3-0 deficit.

Atlanta United Vice President Carlos Bocanegra on Monday said that the the team is currently having conversations about which players' contract options will be exercised for 2021. The league deadline for those decisions is the end of the month.

Bocanegra said that league and the MLSPA are currently working through what to do for players whose options aren’t exercised but who want to play in the game.

Atlanta United has given its players the next two weeks off. They are expected to rejoin the team at the beginning of December to start preparing for the game against Club America, which will be played December 15 or 16.

As previously reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the team will be able to select players it signed during the current MLS season in the tournament game. That group includes Marcelino Moreno, Jurgen Damm, Erik Lopez and possibly Erick Torres.

Bocanegra said the player pool for the tournament could also include some of the players on Atlanta United 2, as well as Andrew Carleton and Lagos Kunga, who were on loan with other clubs in USL this season.

Clubs will be allowed to submit new 35-player rosters no later than 30 days prior to the upcoming match as long as the players registered by the club didn’t compete in the competition in the tournament for their previous club. From that 35-player roster, clubs will submit 23-player match rosters no later than 44 hours before a match.

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