The World's Game In The Heart of the Sun Belt

Send us your Atlanta Cup photos!

The Atlanta Cup is over, but the memories will live on. Atlanta Soccer News is inviting parents, players and youth associations to submit photos from the action of one of the largest tournaments in the country.

Please send your photos as .jpg attachments to: atlantasoccernews@gmail.com and we’ll post them in the coming days. Please identify teams and players and any results of games shown in the photos.

The following shots were taken by yours truly from Monday’s finals at the Metro North fields in Cobb County. We’d love to have yours too!

The Girls Under-11 finals featured North Carolina's Lake Norman Soccer Club 98 Lady Black (light blue) and the winners (in dark blue) from Birmingham United North 99 Girls Blue from Alabama.

The Girls Under-11 finals featured North Carolina's Lake Norman Soccer Club 98 Lady Black (light blue) and the winners (in dark blue) from Birmingham United North 99 Girls Blue in Alabama.

West Georgia FC United 94 Premier (in black) topped Gwinnett Soccer Association 94 Phoenix Red in the Under-16 boys A division finals.

West Georgia FC United 94 Premier (in black) topped Gwinnett Soccer Association 94 Phoenix Red in the Under-16 boys A division finals.

September 7, 2009   No Comments

Atlanta Cup tied to city’s World Cup bid

What’s billed as one of the largest youth tournaments in the United States gets underway all around the metro area Saturday as the Atlanta Cup swings into action through Labor Day.

Here’s the complete schedule of games, venues, teams and other information. More than 600 youth teams will be in action, as well as a handful of women’s teams in the first year that the Atlanta Cup has been open to adult teams.

In addition to being the biggest fundraiser for Georgia Soccer, the Atlanta Cup is an integral part of Atlanta’s bid for a World Cup venue. One of the factors examined by the U.S. Soccer Federation is community support. Picture 4

Georgia Soccer executive director Rick Skirvin said petitions in support of Atlanta’s bid will be available at the Atlanta Cup venues. Players, parents and fans will be encouraged to make videos, among other things, to show their support. Atlanta is one of 27 remaining cities in the mix for inclusion in the USSF’s bid to play host to the World Cup in either 2018 or 2022.

“These efforts will be going on beyond this weekend,” Skirvin said. “It’s a chance to see how strong the local interest is. What is clear is that Atlanta is capable of handling major sporting events. What is unclear is how big a soccer community we have and how far our reach is.”

Georgia Soccer was involved in promotional efforts for the AC Milan-Club América World Football Challenge match at the Georgia Dome that drew 50,000 spectators in July. Like a June match, also at the Dome, that featured Mexico and Venezuela, spectators came from around the state and the Southeast.

Jürgen Maika of the USA Bid Committee said he got “a very good feel and understanding of the city” when visiting during the World Football Challenge, but spoke in general terms about what prospective bidding cities needed to do to show community support. Atlanta’s experience during the so-called “Summer of Soccer” in North America, he said, was not uncommon.

“What we saw in Atlanta is a clear example of what we have seen around the nation,” he said. “There is a passion for the game, greater than what people might imagine. There’s a sense of soccer being elevated to having a much stronger social consciousness in the States. It gives us a sense of relief that we know how to host large events. Our cities are well-prepared for this.”

Maika said another trip to Atlanta is not scheduled before the bid committee pares down its list of potential venues to 18 cities by the end of the year because visits to other sites still need to be made.

September 4, 2009   No Comments