Three Atlanta United players called up to U.S. for Gold Cup

Atlanta United centerback Miles Robinson, fullback George Bello and goalkeeper Brad Guzan were named to the U.S. men’s team for the coming Gold Cup tournament.

Guzan, 36, has 64 appearances for the U.S. team. He has 134 appearances for Atlanta United. U.S. manager Gregg Berhalter on Thursday described Guzan as a veteran leader who can help the team compete to win the tournament.

Robinson, 24, has three appearances for the U.S. team. He has 71 appearances for Atlanta United and has developed into arguably the best centerback in MLS.

“With Miles, it’s pretty clear: He’s brought into being a starter on this team,” Berhalter said Thursday. “He needs the international experience to continue his growth.”

Bello, 19, has one appearance for the U.S. team. He has 33 appearances for Atlanta United. Berhalter said he will be in a tough competition with Colorado’s Sam Vines for minutes with the U.S. team.

Atlanta United and Colorado tied among MLS teams with three players each named to the roster. The three players will leave Atlanta United to join the U.S. camp as early as July 5, with the first training session July 6.

Also making the team are Lilburn native Sean Johnson, a goalkeeper for NYCFC, and Lawrenceville’s Walker Zimmerman, a centerback for Nashville. Berhalter described Zimmerman as a starter with Robinson.

The U.S. team’s first game in the Gold Cup is scheduled to be played July 11. It also has games scheduled for July 15 against Martinique and July 18 against Canada. Should the U.S. advance out of its group, the quarterfinals are scheduled to start July 24, the semifinals July 29 and the finals Aug. 1. The team’s group-stage games will be played at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City.

The honors bestowed upon the three players will make for a challenging stretch of games for Atlanta United, which is 2-2-6 this season and heading into Saturday’s game at Chicago not among the seven teams above the playoff line. It is one point from the seventh.

The players likely will miss at least two of Atlanta United’s games: July 8 at Nashville and July 17 vs. New England. Should the U.S. continue to advance, they would also miss games scheduled July 21 at Cincinnati, July 24 vs. Columbus, and July 30 at Orlando.

Atlanta United manager Gabriel Heinze said he’s happy for the players, but it does make it tough for a club team’s coach.

Atlanta United’s centerback depth includes Anton Walkes, Alan Franco, George Campbell and Alex DeJohn. The team’s goalkeepers include Alec Kann and Ben Lundgaard. Atlanta United’s other left fullback is Mikey Ambrose.

Fullback Brooks Lennon said he had a conversation with Berhalter a few days ago, and he is going to continue to push to try to be selected for the next camp.

The roster (appearances/goals):

Goalkeepers (3): Brad Guzan (Atlanta United; 64/0), Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 9/0), Matt Turner (New England Revolution; 1/0)

Defenders (8): George Bello (Atlanta United; 1/0), Reggie Cannon (Boavista/POR; 18/1), Shaq Moore (Tenerife/ESP; 5/0), Donovan Pines (D.C. United; 0/0), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United; 3/1), James Sands (New York City FC; 0/0), Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids; 3/0), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC; 14/2)

Midfielders (6): Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids; 31/2), Gianluca Busio (Sporting Kansas City; 0/0), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 24/7), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders; 20/0), Eryk Williamson (Portland Timbers; 0/0), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; 12/0)

Forwards: (6): Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 35/8), Daryl Dike (Orlando City; 3/1), Nicholas Gioacchini (Caen/FRA; 3/2), Matthew Hoppe (Schalke/GER; 0/0), Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids; 7/2), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew; 56/12)

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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