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Atlanta United players find pros and cons in new MLS Cup playoffs format

MARIETTA, Ga. — Now that they have been through it, Atlanta United players are comfortable sharing their thoughts on Major League Soccer’s new playoff format.

Despite the fact that Atlanta won MLS Cup under the old format and crashed out in the Eastern Conference final this year, the reviews were not all bad.

“I liked it in a way where a lot more is at stake and you feel that extra intensity and bite to the game,” Julian Gressel said at Atlanta’s end-of-season press conference Thursday. “You are fighting for you life out there.