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MLS playoffs schedule set, Atlanta opens in Columbus next week: Starting Lineup, October 23

by Jason Longshore

1- The schedule is set for the first round of the MLS Cup playoffs. Atlanta United will play game 1 of their series in Columbus on Wednesday, November 1 at 7:30 before coming back home to the Benz for game 2 on Tuesday, November 7 at 7pm. Game 3, if necessary, would be played on Sunday, November 12 in Columbus.

2- The wild card games will be played this Wednesday with Red Bulls hosting Charlotte at 7:30pm followed by Kansas City hosting San Jose at 9:30pm.

3- MLS set new overall and average attendance records for the 2023 season. The overall number is to be expected with St. Louis joining the league as team #29, but the league drew over 10 million fans across the board for the second straight year. The average attendance per match was 22,111, breaking the record set in Atlanta and Minnesota's first year in the league in 2017. 21 of the 28 returning teams in the league saw their attendance increase with 8 achieving increases of more than 10 percent.

Atlanta United led MLS in attendance once again, something it has done every year since joining the league in 2017. (photo credit: ATLUTD)

4- Ali Krieger's career and Gotham's season continues as they went on the road in the NWSL quarterfinals and upset the North Carolina Courage last night 2-0. Delanie Sheehan scored her first ever pro goal and Yazmeen Ryan put the game out of reach with Gotham's second. Portland awaits Gotham in the NWSL semifinals on November 5 while San Diego will host OL Reign.

5- Austin FC II pulled off the road upset yesterday as well, defeating defending champions Columbus Crew II in the MLS Next Pro Cup final at Historic Crew Stadium. The visitors only allowed one goal in the postseason, it was in the final from the penalty spot. That goal from Thomas Roberts gave Columbus the 1-0 lead, but Austin scored 3 goals in 10 minutes to claim the championship. Valentin Noel, a Frenchman who starred at Pitt in college, was named the Man of the Match for his contributions in that comeback which included scoring a goal and earning a penalty.

6- Manchester United face an early exit from Europe after losing their first two matches in the Champions League group stage. Erik ten Hag says tomorrow's match at Old Trafford against FC Copenhagen is a must win for the Red Devils. ten Hag said, "In moments of adversity the fans are still with us and fighting. Definitely tomorrow, the passing of Sir Bobby Charlton -- their hero, the legend -- it will be more emotional. He is in front of Old Trafford with Denis Law and George Best. He is always with us and they are always a huge inspiration for us every day in every game."

7- Barcelona has another teenage star emerging. The latest to debut from La Masia is 17-year-old Marc Guiu, who on Sunday subbed in late in the second half and scored about 30 seconds into his debut to give Barcelona a 1-0 win against Athletic Bilbao in La Liga.

8- James Madison's men hurdled Georgia State yesterday in the Sun Belt Conference standings, winning 3-1 in Atlanta on a hat trick from Evan Southern. The Georgia State women earned a scoreless draw on the road at East Division leaders Old Dominion yesterday afternoon, they will try to improve their seeding for the conference tournament in their last regular season match on Thursday in Atlanta against App State.

9- A Greek Super League match between rivals Panathinaikos and Olympiakos had to be abandoned on Sunday after a player was hit by a firework. Panathinaikos left back Juan 'Juankar' Carlos was warming up on the touchline shortly after halftime when he was struck by the firework and had to be carried off the pitch on a stretcher. The game, which was being played at Olympiakos' home stadium, was called off at 1-1. (Reuters)

10- On this date in 1963, Emory defeated Oglethorpe in Brookhaven 4-1 with four different goal scorers for the Eagles.

11- Your #1 song on that day in 1963 is your Song of the Day, enjoy "Sugar Shack" by Jimmy Gilmer & The Fireballs.

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