Atlanta United (2-2-2, 8 pts) stands at 6th place in the MLS Eastern Conference, and are seeing red after their 4th game of the season featuring a red card.
This is going to be short, but it isn’t going to be sweet. Atlanta United is getting hosed by the refs, and it is getting tiresome to watch. Last week, ATL UTD lost 2-1 to the Montreal Impact, but it was how they lost that is maddening.
In early going, it wasn’t a pretty match, but Atlanta seemed to have an advantage in the middle and looked to be holding a slight edge in momentum. As with most close games or matches, the refs became the story and changed the outcome of the game.
To be sure, Montreal is a good team. In addition, our beloved Atlanta United are in the middle of a brutal four game road stretch. Losing that game on the road to that team isn’t embarrassing. But, again, it was how they lost.
In short, once the red card was issued to Leandro González Pirez, consequently putting ATL UTD playing a man down, it was almost a foregone conclusion. It was also the timing of the infraction. Not only was it an atrociously blown call, and it was, it was also the timing of the call. Atlanta clearly had momentum, and this completely stalled it. Please note that this red card has since been rescinded.
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In fact, of Atlanta’s six games, thus far, four of those games have shown a red card. Three of those red cards have gone against Atlanta. That is an incredibly dubious stat and quite eyebrow raising for this writer.
One has to wonder why. Is there some sort of league directive we don’t know about where expansion teams are “welcomed” to the league? Why are red cards the answer and not yellow cards? Four in six games infers that, either Atlanta is either really dirty or really undisciplined. If you’ve seen them play, you know neither is even close to true.
Look…I realize that this is more of a rant than an analysis. I also realize that blaming the refs for losses borders on whining. I say….so be it. At some point the incapabilities, ineptitude, and inferior work of referees have to be called out…especially when they alter the face of a game so drastically.
Our beloved Atlanta United play Salt Lake next on Saturday night. We’ll see if this recent rash of red cards continues, and is still flowing in Atlanta’s direction. if so, it may take me another week to wait to write in order to get any inappropriate language out of my system.