Atlanta United manager Gabriel Heinze doesn’t like all these draws any more than you, it seems.
The team drew its sixth game in just its 10th match because of Sunday’s 0-0 result against New York Red Bulls at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
“First, I don’t like to tie,” he said. “I like to build when I lose or when I win. I don’t think I’m taking the right path if I can only help the team when I win. It’s totally the opposite.”
The team is drawing a lot of its games because it is having trouble scoring. It has scored 11 goals in 10 games. Sunday’s result was the second consecutive game in which it was shut out.
However, because of an injury to midfielder Franco Ibarra, Heinze may have found a formation that seemed to spark the club, particularly in the second half against Red Bulls.
Switching to three centerbacks, which pushed midfielder Santiago Sosa and wingbacks George Bello and Brooks Lennon higher up the field, the team looked as good on offense as it has in most of its league games this season.
After creating just three scoring chances and putting none of its three shots on goal, the team finished with 10 chances created, led by Lennon’s six, and 13 shots, including three on goal.
“It’s true that in the second half we changed our positioning on the field,” Heinze said. “We found a little bit of the style of play we want to show.”
Heinze said because Red Bulls were playing three centerbacks, the team put its wingers through the middle channels and the fullbacks in man-to-man situations. Ezequiel Barco and Marcelino Moreno were tasked with playing through the mid-channels in the build up.
That the team didn’t score worried Heinze, but he said it’s the same when the other team scores. Atlanta United shutting out Red Bulls was its third this season.
Credit: Dakota Williams/Atlanta United
Credit: Dakota Williams/Atlanta United
“I’m going to continue doing the same job” he said. “Also it’s true that we need a little bit of luck, but I will continue to be dedicated and try as much as I can.”
Sosa said all the players can do is keep creating chances.
“Obviously it’s not nice to not score goals but the team is trying,” he said. “This is soccer. Lately it’s been difficult for us to score goals but personally I think that we’re going to change that and when the ball starts to go in then things will be different because in terms of the game we’re doing well. Sometimes the ball doesn’t go in.”
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Atlanta United’s 2021 MLS schedule
April 17 Atlanta United 0, Orlando 0
April 24 Atlanta United 3, Chicago 1
May 1 New England 2, Atlanta United 1
May 9 Atlanta United 1, Inter Miami 1,
May 15 Atlanta United 1, Montreal 0
May 23 Atlanta United 1, Seattle 1
May 29 Atlanta United 2, Nashville 2
June 20 Atlanta United 2, Philadelphia 2
June 23 NYCFC 1, Atlanta United 0
June 27 Atlanta United 0, New York Red Bulls 0
July 3 at Chicago, 8 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
July 8 at Nashville, 8:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
July 17 vs. New England, 5 p.m., ESPN
July 21 at Cincinnati, 7 p.m., FS1
July 24 vs. Columbus, 3:30 p.m., ABC
July 30 at Orlando, 8 p.m., ESPN
Aug. 4 at Montreal, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Aug. 7 at Columbus, 7:30 p.m. BSSO/BSSE
Aug. 15 vs. LAFC, 4 p.m. ESPN
Aug. 18 vs. Toronto, 7 p.m. BSSO/BSSE
Aug. 21 at D.C. United, 8 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Aug. 28 vs. Nashville, 3:30 p.m., Univision
Sept. 10 vs. Orlando, 7 p.m., FS1
Sept. 15 vs. Cincinnati, 7 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Sept. 18 vs. D.C. United, 3:30 p.m., Univision
Sept. 25 at Philadelphia,3:30 p.m., Univision
Sept. 29 vs. Inter Miami, 7:30 p.m., FS1
Oct. 2 at Montreal, 7 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Oct. 16 at Toronto, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Oct. 20 vs. NYCFC, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Oct. 27 vs. Inter Miami, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Oct. 30 vs. Toronto, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Nov. 3 at New York Red Bulls, TBD, BSSO/BSSE
Nov. 7 at Cincinnati, 3:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
I tell my players, also my son and daughter, that when you lose it helps you keep building. In that respect if you have a different analysis. But totally the opposite for me. When I lose, that’s when I need to continue. I don’t change. When I win, that’s when I need to change.”
“Obviously it’s not nice to not score goals but the team is trying. Today we had a shot hit the post. This is soccer. Lately it’s been difficult for us to score goals but personally I think that we’re going to change that and when the ball starts to go in then things will be different because in terms of the game we’re doing well. Sometimes the ball doesn’t go in.”
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