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Atlanta soccer

Todd Kirkland / associated press

The stands are packed with red-and-black-clad fans who chant incessantly, accompanied by a steady drumbeat and swirling flags.

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"Atlanta!" they shout from one end of Bobby Dodd Stadium.

 

"United!" everyone else responds.

 

There's plenty to cheer about with an expansion team that has already displayed a dynamic style of play, scoring 11 goals in its first three games.

 

Patrick Sullivan

 

Friday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

City Lights: Atlanta United; Chocolate; And More

Mar 7, 2017
Courtesy of Atlanta United

Tuesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Courtesy of Atlanta United

The inaugural season is now underway for Atlanta's new Major League Soccer team. Atlanta United FC lost to the New York Red Bulls in Sunday’s opener at Georgia Tech's Bobby Dodd Stadium. But, in other ways, the match was a “win” for the new team.

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Twenty-five minutes into the game, Yamil Asad scored the first goal in Atlanta United history. Then, right at the end of the game, New York scored twice – finishing the game with an Atlanta defeat.

Todd Kirkland / Associated Press

Atlanta United had the lead and the sellout home crowd in its first match as an expansion team.

 

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The New York Red Bulls had the experience that made the difference in a second-half turnaround that included some unexpected help from Atlanta — a decisive own goal.

 

New York scored two second-half goals in a span of about 6 minutes and the Red Bulls rallied for a 2-1 victory over Atlanta on Sunday night.

 

A fan holds a scarf during a party at which Atlanta United FC was announced as the name of an MLS soccer expansion team, Tuesday, July 7, 2015, in Atlanta. The team is scheduled to begin to play in 2017 at the city's new retractable-roof stadium.
Branden Camp / AP Photo

Professional soccer is returning to Atlanta.

The city's new Major League Soccer team, Atlanta United FC, is kicking off its first season this weekend.

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Dan Courtemanche, executive vice president of communications for MLS, said the team has a good shot of bringing together Atlantans of all backgrounds.

That's partly because the league hasn't been around that long.

Artistic rendering of soccer field planned for Five Points Station
MARTA

Atlanta, say hello to transit-oriented soccer.

It's the latest move by MARTA to try to boost street life around its stations. The organization is working with nonprofit Soccer in the Streets to construct what it’s billing the first soccer field ever built inside  transit facility.

The pitch, measuring about 66 by 99 feet (smaller than a regulation-sized soccer field), will be housed on the top floor of Five Points Station, in downtown Atlanta.

Mary Claire Kelly / WABE

Atlanta is growing as a soccer city. In two years, there will be a new Major League team, and local soccer clubs are fielding the next generation. Some young female players recently got a visit from a soccer celebrity: Lauren Holiday, who scored the third goal in the final Women’s World Cup match between the U.S. and Japan this past summer.

Like many young girls, Holiday started playing soccer at a young age because her brother was into sports.

Marietta City Council approved the site plan to the Atlanta United soccer team for a practice facility. A previous deal with DeKalb County ended abruptly.
Branden Camp / Associated Press

 

With soccer a hot topic around the country the last few weeks, Atlanta fans had plenty of reasons to cheer on the local front.

On Tuesday, two days after the U.S. won the Women’s World Cup, the official name, logo and team colors of the new Atlanta Major League Soccer franchise were unveiled.

Atlanta United FC won’t play its first game until 2017, but 5,000 fans turned out in Midtown Atlanta for this week’s announcement.

Atlanta's New Soccer Team Could Be Symbol For Unity

Jul 10, 2015
A fan holds a scarf during a party at which Atlanta United FC was announced as the name of an MLS soccer expansion team, Tuesday, July 7, 2015, in Atlanta. The team is scheduled to begin to play in 2017 at the city's new retractable-roof stadium.
Branden Camp / AP Photo

    

Soccer fans still have to wait about a year and a half before they will be able to go to a match to see Atlanta's pro team at the new downtown stadium. But when owner 

Arthur Blank officially unveiled the team's new name – Atlanta United FC – and its new logo at a rowdy event Tuesday, and the crowd of 4,000 fans could not have been more excited!

When it comes to sports in Georgia, frenzy is usually associated with college football or NASCAR ... maybe the Falcons, the Hawks or the Braves.

But soccer?

Well all that is beginning to change.

Atlanta United FC

Atlanta United FC is ready for its close-up.

Officials with the 22nd franchise in Major League Soccer unveiled the team’s logo and colors on Tuesday.

“When we announced the club in 2014, I promised three things: to put a winning team on the field, to provide a great match day experience for our fans, and to entrench this club into the community. We’re on our way to fulfilling those promises, and I look forward to sharing the excitement of building this club with our incredible supporters,” team owner Arthur Blank said.

Atlanta Dream guard/forward Angel McCoughtry (35) and Chicago Sky forward Tamera Young (1) battle for a the ball  in the first half of Game 3 of the WNBA basketball Eastern Conference semifinals, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014, in Atlanta.
John Bazemore / AP Photo

While the Atlanta Hawks were denied a chance to play in the NBA finals, another professional basketball team in the city is looking to get back to a familiar place.

The Atlanta Dream begins its eighth season in the WNBA Friday in New York, and plays its home opener Sunday afternoon at Philips Arena.