The difference between Philadelphia, one of the most-experienced teams in MLS, and Atlanta United, without four starters because of injuries, was evident in Sunday’s 2-2 draw at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Atlanta United jumped out to a 2-0 lead and was on the verge of winning its fourth consecutive home match and getting its third consecutive shutout at home.

And then, its lack of experience popped up.

The team kept pressing a goalkeeper it didn’t need to press. It played with an abandon that resulted in giving Philadelphia two chances that it wasn’t going to throw away.

“We knew the type of game that was in front of us, and we were trying to look for the game and look to create chances, while (Philadelphia) was trying to destroy our attacks and then counter, hit in transition, hit on set pieces, or hit on throw-ins, and we knew that since the beginning of the week,” Atlanta United manager Gonzalo Pineda said. “We were prepared for that, but in little moments after the 70th minute, we lost control.”

On Philadelphia’s first goal, Edwin Mosquera, a Under-22 Initiative signing who came on for Homegrown signing Tyler Wolff, sprinted from the left to the right to press a Philadelphia player hard against the sideline. Pineda described it as an amazing play.

Mosquera won the ball, which was his reward. But he then cleared the ball across and down the field back to the right. There was no one within 20 yards. Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan tried to come out to win the ball, only to realize that Philadelphia’s Mikael Uhre was going to get there first.

Uhre did and then had the angle to beat Guzan to his near post with a pinpoint shot in the 73rd minute.

“It wasn’t an accident, I will say the first goal,” Pineda said.

The second goal is one that Pineda said they will reflect on, which is his way of saying they have to get better in that situation.

It came from Atlanta United’s inability to defend a dead ball, which was a problem the previous two seasons.

The sequence started in Philadelphia’s end of the field with Atlanta United pressing Philadelphia backup goalkeeper Oliver Semmle, who came just before the end of the first half and had no interest in trying to play out of the back.

With Atlanta United’s press initiated, everyone moved up the field to remain coordinated and to try to eliminate gaps. But they were spread thin.

Semmle played a long pass from the top of the 18-yard box into Atlanta United’s defensive third. The Union won the ball and played a pass into space behind Atlanta United’s back four. Caleb Wiley caught up to the loose ball and played it out for a throw-in about 6 yards from the end line.

The throw-in came in. Wiley won the first ball near the 6-yard box, heading it back toward the top of the 18-yard box. Kai Wagner beat Mosquera to the ball, hitting a right-footed volley into the upper left corner.

“Those little moments, or lack of concentration, or not great reactions against these type of teams that are very direct, that are looking for those long balls all the time .... so we need to learn,” Pineda said.

Pineda said the team did work on game situations during the week that they anticipated, but it’s hard to replicate everything an opponent might do. He was proud that his team kept trying to score another goal but he said they also need to learn more about handling situations.

Wiley, who scored the team’s second goal with a low, hard shot from 30 yards, said he isn’t worried that the team might regress to last year’s form.

“It’s a different feeling with these guys,” Wiley said. “I know that we will bounce back from this and I know that next week against Cincinnati, a very similar side, we will be a lot better and it will be the 80th, 90th in extra time and we will be locked in.”

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Atlanta United’s 2024 schedule

Feb. 24 Columbus 1, Atlanta United 0

March 9 Atlanta United 4, New England 1

March 17 Atlanta United 2, Orlando 0

March 23 Toronto 2, Atlanta United 0

March 31 Atlanta United 3, Chicago 0

April 6 Atlanta United 1, NYCFC 1

April 14 Atlanta United 2, Philadelphia 2

April 20 vs. Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m.

April 27 at Chicago, 8:30 p.m.

May 4 vs. Minnesota, 7:30 p.m.

May 11 vs. D.C. United, 7:30 p.m.

May 15 at Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m.

May 18 at Nashville, 1:30 p.m.

May 25 vs. LAFC, 7:30 p.m.

May 29 at Miami, 7:30 p.m.

June 2 vs Charlotte, 4:30 p.m., FOX

June 15 vs. Houston, 7:30 p.m.

June 19 at D.C. United, 7:30 p.m.

June 22 at St. Louis, 8:30 p.m.

June 29 vs. Toronto, 7:30 p.m.

July 3 at New England, 7:30 p.m.

July 6 at Real Salt Lake, 9:30 p.m.

July 13 at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.

July 17 vs. NYCFC, 7:30 p.m.

July 20 vs. Columbus, 7:30 p.m.

July 26 vs. D.C. United in Leagues Cup, 7:30 p.m.

Aug. 4 vs. Santos Laguna in Leagues Cup, 4 p.m.

Aug. 24 at L.A. Galaxy, 10:30 p.m.

Aug. 31 at Charlotte, 7:30 p.m.

Sept. 14 vs. Nashville, 7:30 p.m.

Sept. 18 vs. Miami, 7:30 p.m.

Sept. 21 at Red Bulls, 7:30 p.m.

Sept. 28 at Philadelphia, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 2 vs. Montreal, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 5 vs. Red Bulls, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 19 at Orlando, 6 p.m.