CFC Latest News

PREVIEW: CFC travels to Atlanta hungry for third win on the bounce

Chattanooga FC starting XI at Huntsville City, April 20, 2024

Chattanooga FC (3-0-2D, 1SOW, 12 pts - 3rd in East, 1st in Southeast Division) travels to Atlanta United 2 (1-3-0D, 3 pts - 13th in East, 5th in Southeast Division) for the first of three head-to-heads of the season on Wednesday, April 24th at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Chattanooga Football Club looks to make it three wins on the bounce when it travels to Kennesaw on Wednesday after a resounding 6-2 victory over Inter Miami II at Finley Stadium last weekend and a gritty 1-0 win on the road at Huntsville City on Saturday.

Atlanta United 2 have had a mixed bag of results of late. After a 4-0 thrashing of Carolina Core at the end of March, consecutive heavy defeats against Philadelphia Union II (0-5) and FC Cincinnati 2 (1-4) followed.

Captain Alex McGrath continued his fine goalscoring form this season as he grabbed the winner in Huntsville in the 86th minute. The midfielder from Spennymoor, England leads the team with four goals, while winger Taylor Gray has a club-leading three assists.

Underwood's pre-match thoughts

Sporting Director and Head Coach Rod Underwood previewed the matchup with Atlanta United 2 and detailed the challenge he's expecting from Steve Cooke's side.

“The league is super competitive and interesting," said Underwood. "I don't think their record indicates what their abilities are. I believe in every game they've played they've had the higher possession than their opposition and it's been considerable. And it hasn't been 52-48%; they're usually in the high 50s, low 60s and the other team is really low, so they have a lot of quality. They're a team you've got to look out for and can be very dangerous. We don't take it lightly. We're going to be really prepared for them."

Underwood was also asked about the 6-2 win over Inter Miami II last weekend and what it did for the team's confidence.

"I think it was good emotionally and for the overall vibe, but we have to be realists. We really look at the data—what they did with the ball and what we did with the ball, goalscoring opportunities—it wasn't a 6-2 game. We were just very good around the goal. We had 15 or 16 shots, ten on target and we scored six. We're realists. That score was not an indicator of the level of Miami. Of course it was great to get the points.

"Something I try to instil in the guys something from a book I read all the time that talks about the supreme climb. We're really built for the daily grind. This is what human beings are made for. The mountaintop experience which we had against Miami was simply an opportunity to say, 'This is where you can go'. The reality is we have to show up every day and do the work. We have to be prepared. We can't take anything for granted. The details are really important, so we can hopefully have another mountaintop experience to say we can go even higher. That's really what we try to get into the players."

Know the Opponent

Javier Armas, Luke Brennan and Karim Tmimi each have two goals on the season, while Erik Centeno leads the way. There are several players who are signed to Atlanta United's first team who have been getting considerable minutes in MLS NEXT Pro this season, including Efrain Morales, the aforementioned Brennan and Centeno.

Attacking midfielder Matias Gallardo, the son of the hugely-successful former River Plate manager Marcelo Gallardo, leads ATL UTD 2 so far this season with seven key passes. Midfielder Javier Armas leads the team in shots (10) and is a mainstay in Cooke's team.

Cooke became ATL UTD 2 head coach on February 3, 2023. The Sheffield, England has extensive experience coaching in the US and had success with the Colorado Rapids and Seattle Sounders academies before moving to Atlanta.

Away Support

With 94 miles separating Finley Stadium and Fifth Third Stadium, the match in Kennesaw represents the shortest trek of the 2024 MLS NEXT Pro season for CFC fans to support the team on the road.

Official Watch Party

Can't make the drive to Kennesaw? Not to worry! The official watch party will be hosted by Cheers Collective member Moxy Chattanooga Downtown on 1220 King St. The Moxy will be running happy hour specials all day for CFC fans, including $7 CFC-themed margaritas and $4 Chattahooligan Kolsch cans and other craft beer selections.

Match info

Venue: Fifth Third Stadium | Kennesaw, Georgia
Kick-off: 7:30 p.m. ET, Wednesday April 24
Audio stream: CFC on Mixlr

Uniforms for Atlanta United 2 vs Chattanooga FC


Mario Maric
Head Referee

Hillis Waddell III
Assistant Referee 1

Jackson Krauser
Assistant Referee 2

Kyle Johnston
4th Official