MLS Cup final in Atlanta sets league single-game attendance record

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Kevin C. Cox
It was a record night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium where a record crowd saw the home side claim its first MLS title

It was a record-setting night in Georgia as Atlanta United nailed down its first MLS Cup title in front of the largest crowd to ever watch a standalone MLS game. 

Josef Martinez scored his 35th goal of the season and set up a second for the Five Stripes as they rolled to a 2-0 win over the Portland Timbers to earn the second-year club its first MLS Cup title.

The crowd of 73,019 set a new record for MLS Cup, smashing the old record of 61,316. That mark has stood since the 2002 MLS Cup at Gillette Stadium, when the LA Galaxy beat the New England Revolution 1-0 to claim the title.

It's been a record year for Atlanta, with the club seeing striker Josef Martinez set the MLS single-season record for goals, had players finish first and second in MLS MVP voting and notched the highest attendance numbers in league history. 

The club that pulled in 901,033 fans across 17 regular season games this season, a record mark, also saw its home stadium set a new high for All-Star Game attendance this summer and had racked up six of the seven best attended regular season matches in the history of the league. 

 

There have been matches in MLS history with higher attendance, but all were played as part of double-headers. 

A match between Chivas USA and the New England Revolution played at LA Coliseum holds the single game MLS mark of 92,650 fans, but that match was played as part of a doubleheader featuring Barcelona and Club America. 

The hometown crowd also got to see Martinez named as MLS Cup MVP, rounding out his sweep of the top individual honors for the year

Just two years in, it's safe to say the Atlanta United project has been a massive success. 

The club will now move forward without manager Gerardo "Tata" Martino, who had already announced that the MLS Cup final would be his last match in charge, but the future still looks very bright in Atlanta. 

 

 

 

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