Thiago Almada likely unavailable for New England

Atlanta United midfielder Thiago Almada #10 dribbles the ball during the match against the Toronto FC at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA on Saturday June 29, 2024. (Photo by Kathryn Skeean/Atlanta United)

Credit: Kathryn Skeean/Atlanta United

Credit: Kathryn Skeean/Atlanta United

Atlanta United midfielder Thiago Almada #10 dribbles the ball during the match against the Toronto FC at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA on Saturday June 29, 2024. (Photo by Kathryn Skeean/Atlanta United)

Thiago Almada’s availability for Wednesday’s MLS match at New England was left unsaid by Atlanta United manager Rob Valentino on Monday.

“That is something that I think is a good question for Garth (Lagerwey) and Carlos (Bocanegra),” Valentino said. “I won’t talk about any speculation.”

Atlanta United is on the verge of selling Almada to a group that owns Botafogo in Brazil, Lyon in France and Crystal Palace in England. The base price of the transfer is $21 million and could reach $30 million if incentives are met, according to reporting by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

It would be very surprising if Almada travels with Atlanta United to Wednesday’s match at New England.

Asked if he’s preparing as if Almada could play, Valentino said he prepares with whatever players are available at that moment. Several first-team players, including Almada, didn’t train with the team on Monday because they were resting after Saturday’s 2-1 win against Toronto and ahead of New England.

Saba Lobjanidze is expected to return to Atlanta Monday evening. He was competing with Georgia in the Euros.

Valentino said he has been in touch with Lobjanidze, who made one appearance in Georgia’s four matches.

“Try to get him integrated to the team as quick as possible,” Valentino said. “He’s eager to get back.”

Lobjanidze has four goals and four assists in 16 appearances.

Valentino said centerback Stian Gregersen is fine after he left Saturday’s match with a calf cramp.

Luis Abram will be available.

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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 Cincinnati 2, Atlanta United 1

April 27 Atlanta United 1, Chicago 1

May 4 Minnesota 2, Atlanta United 1

May 7 Atlanta United 3, Charlotte Independence 0 in U.S. Open Cup

May 11 D.C. United 3, Atlanta United 2

May 15 Cincinnati 1, Atlanta United 0

May 18 Atlanta United 1, Nashville 1

May 21 Atlanta United 0 (5), Charleston 0 (4) in U.S. Open Cup

May 25 LAFC 1, Atlanta United 0

May 29 Atlanta United 3, Miami 1

June 2 Charlotte 3, Atlanta United 2

June 15 Atlanta United 2, Houston 2

June 19 Atlanta United 1, D.C. United 0

June 22 Atlanta United 1, St. Louis 1

June 29 Atlanta United 2, Toronto 1

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

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

July 9 vs. Indy Eleven in U.S. Open Cup

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.