Toronto FC vs Atlanta United: MLS preview, tips and team news

Atlanta United will hope to build some momentum this weekend as they travel to take on a Toronto FC side who are struggling to change their MLS fortunes under Bob Bradley.

Toronto FC occupies 12th place in the Eastern Conference heading into this weekend's action with opponents Atlanta United sitting just one point outside the Final Series Playoff places in 9th.

RealSport101's Harry Smith is on hand to preview this close MLS battle with team news, betting tips and predicted lineups included.

Toronto FC vs Atlanta United team news

Bob Bradley welcomed the return of injured trio Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty, Alejandro Pozuelo and Kadin Chung last weekend, meaning Toronto FC will be without just three first-team players for this encounter. The Reds will be without the injured Jonathan Osorio, Chris Mavinga and Noble Okello when they welcome Atlanta United to BMO Field.

The hosts could revert back to a 4-3-3 system for the visit of Atlanta United with Lukas MacNaughton, Ralph Priso-Mbongue and Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty all in contention for recalls.

Machop Chol and Caleb Wiley both returned to action when Atlanta United hosted Inter Miami last time out, meaning the away side's injury list has been cut down to six names for the trip to Canada this weekend. Miles Robinson, Osvaldo Alonso and Dylan Castanheira are among the confirmed absentees.

Manager Gonzalo Pineda could opt for an unchanged starting XI this weekend when the Five Stripes travel to Toronto following a composed performance against Inter Miami. Amar Sejdic and Matheus Rossetto are both pushing for recalls but will likely have to settle for a place on the bench.

Confirmed Absentees

Toronto FC

Injured: Jonathan Osorio, Chris Mavinga, Noble Okello

Atlanta United

Injured: Santiago Sosa, Miles Robinson, Brad Guzan, Andrew Gutman, Osvaldo Alonso, Dylan Castanheira

Predicted Lineups

Toronto FC (4-3-3): Westberg; Thompson, O'Neill, MacNaughton, Petrasso; Bradley, Pozuelo, Priso-Mbongue; Marshall-Rutty, Jimenez, Nelson

Atlanta United (4-2-3-1): Novo; Lennon, Franco, Campbell, Wiley; Ibarra, Hyndman; Araujo, Moreno, Cisneros; Martinez

Toronto FC vs Atlanta United score prediction

Toronto FC head into the weekend in desperate need of a win. The Reds had built up some decent momentum heading into the international break, building on a 2-2 draw against DC United with a 3-2 win against MLS basement boys Chicago Fire, but were comprehensively beaten by New York Red Bulls last time out.

Bob Bradley's side has claimed just four points from their last MLS matches ahead of the visit of Atlanta United with Bob Bradley's position as manager coming under scrutiny as the Canadian outfit drop further and further off the pace in the battle for the playoffs.

Atlanta United's fortunes look much brighter as they travel to Toronto after cruising to a 2-0 home win against Phil Neville's Inter Miami. The Five Stripes were winless in three league games prior to that result but look a much stronger threat now that star man Josef Martinez is back in the side.

Gonzalo Pineda will be hoping to build some momentum here, but the away side's form on the road is a reason for concern. The visitors have claimed just a single point from their last four MLS games away from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium and will need to step up their game to beat a Toronto side who have proved stable on home turf.

Score Prediction: Toronto FC 1-2 Atlanta United

Harry Smith's Tip: Both Teams To Score

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