Can 5 Stripes repeat as MLS Cup champs?

Thomas Mott
July 17, 2019 - 2:03 am

© Jennifer Buchanan

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Thomas Mott and Jason Longshore take a look back at the Atlanta United loss on Sunday to the Seattle Sounders.  The 5 Stripes are in some trouble right now between yellow card suspensions and injuries.  Jason is very interested to see how Frank de Boer will manage the players for the match tomorrow against the Houston Dynamo.  United doesn't currently have many options out wide.  Jason believes the poor play is a three-headed dragon with injuries, the tough scheduling, and the massive coaching changes during the off-season. 

The schedule really limits training and recovery, making it very tough to get better over time.  Franco Escobar has struggled, having issues getting overwhelmed.  Miles Robinson has played as many minutes as everyone on the team. Michael Parkhurst is playing all the different back slots.  The 5 Stripes are at the point where it's next man up.  With Pity Martinez under the microscope, Jason gives him a solid B for his performance on Sunday.  Pity did well switching the point of attack very quickly, something we haven't seen a lot of. 

Dynamo will be a big match.  Houston has struggled horribly on the road the last three seasons.  They get conservative on the road, but have a lot of fire power and can score a lot if the offense gets going.  Jason sees this match for United as a balance between defending and getting the offense going.  The biggest question of the day is what kind of lineup Frank de Boer will roll out.  Jason believes United is still capable of winning the MLS Cup.  With a few weeks remaining in the Summer Transfer Window, Atlanta may have to find a way to make something happen in order to build for a Playoff stretch run on their way to defending the Cup.