Atlanta United’s Tyler Wolff back in familiar spot

Atlanta United forward Tyler Wolff #28 passes the ball during full team training at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground in Marietta, Ga., on Monday June 29, 2020. Major League Soccer announced that as of Thursday, June 4, clubs may return to full team training in compliance with detailed health and safety protocols that were created in consultation with medical and infectious disease experts. (Photo by Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United)

caption arrowCaption
Atlanta United forward Tyler Wolff #28 passes the ball during full team training at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground in Marietta, Ga., on Monday June 29, 2020. Major League Soccer announced that as of Thursday, June 4, clubs may return to full team training in compliance with detailed health and safety protocols that were created in consultation with medical and infectious disease experts. (Photo by Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United)

Playing a new, more comfortable position, Atlanta United’s Tyler Wolff said Tuesday that he looks forward to the MLS season.

ExploreMore AJC coverage of Atlanta United

Wolff, 18 years old, was moved by manager Gonzalo Pineda into an attacking midfield role, rather than the central midfield role he played last season. Wolff is tasked with working in spaces and running behind defensive lines. It’s the position he played in the team’s academy and with Atlanta United 2.

“That’s where I had my success to get my opportunity here,” he said.

Last season, Wolff made seven appearances, including two starts, with the first team. Playing in his natural position with Atlanta United 2, he scored six goals with one assist in nine appearances.

Wolff said playing the position brings back old feelings.

Wolff looked sharp in his new role Tuesday, scoring one goal and making a pass that helped set up another in the 2-0 win against the Georgia Storm in a shortened scrimmage in Marietta. Wolff had another likely goal denied because his close-range shot slammed off teammate Jackson Conway.

Wolff’s goal was an example of what Pineda wants. The ball moved from the middle of the pitch to the left. A shot was hit. Instead of watching, Wolff was moving. He found space in the penalty box and hit an unmarked header into the goal.

“I was pleased, especially with Tyler in the movement in behind the lines, his positioning in between the lines, playing as a 10,” Pineda said.

Wolff’s issue is the same faced by many of the Homegrown signings: There are a lot of experienced competitors on the depth chart, including Marcelino Moreno and possibly Thiago Almada.

Wolff said he talks with Moreno and Matheus Rossetto about the connections he needs to make on the field to express himself and to keep the ball moving.

Wolff’s goal is more playing time.

“I think that’s what everybody wants, they want to be on the field,” he said. “But I think I need to prove to Gonzalo that I can do it day in and day out at training. And then when I get my minutes, making sure I’m creating chances so that I can be on the field with the first team.”

For more content about Atlanta United

Follow me on Twitter @DougRobersonAJC

On Facebook at Atlanta United News Now

On Instagram at DouglasDavidRoberson

Atlanta United coverage on the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

-

Atlanta United’s 2022 MLS schedule

Feb. 27 vs. Sporting KC, 3 p.m., FS1

March 5 at Colorado, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

March 13 vs. Charlotte, 4:30 p.m., FS1

March 19 vs. Montreal, 4 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

April 2 at D.C. United, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

April 9 at Charlotte, 3 p.m., ESPN

April 16 vs. Cincinnati, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

April 24 at Miami, 1 p.m., ESPN

April 30 at Montreal, 4 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

May 7 vs. Chicago, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

May 15 vs. New England, 2 p.m., ESPN

May 21 at Nashville, 7:30 p.m. FOX

May 28 vs. Columbus Crew, 7 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

June 19 vs Miami, 4 p.m., ESPN2

June 25 at Toronto, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

June 30 at New York Red Bulls, 8 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

July 3 at NYCFC, 5 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

July 9 vs. Austin, 7 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

July 13 vs. Real Salt Lake, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

July 17 vs. Orlando, 3 p.m., ABC

July 24 at L.A. Galaxy, 9:30 p.m., FS1

July 30 at Chicago, 5 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

August 6 vs. Seattle, 3 p.m., ABC

August 13 at Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m. BSSO/BSSE

August 17 vs. New York Red Bulls, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

August 21 at Columbus, 6 p.m., FS1

August 28 vs. D.C. United, 4 p.m., UNIV

August 31 at Philadelphia, 7:30 p.m.

Sept. 4 at Portland, 5:30 p.m., FOX

Sept. 10 vs. Toronto, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

Sept. 14 at Orlando, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

Sept 17 vs. Philadelphia, 3:30 p.m., UniMas

Oct. 1 at New England, 1 p.m., UniMas

Oct. 9 vs. NYCFC, TBD, BSSO/BSSE