Atlanta United looked like a vintage version of themselves Saturday in a 3-0 win over Southeast rival Charlotte FC, and homegrown Caleb Wiley played a starring role.
The 18-year-old struck for a brace and added an assist – all in the first half – ensuring three big points in the standings for the Five Stripes and Player of the Matchday presented by Continental Tire honors for Matchday 3 of the 2023 season.
Wiley’s three-goal contributions in a single half put him in elite company, slotting among Alphonso Davies and Bobby Convey as the youngest in MLS history to do so.
Atlanta United's Caleb Wiley named Player of the Matchday presented by Continental
Wiley got the visitors off to a dream start, capitalizing on a Charlotte turnover by latching onto a ball into space by Thiago Almada and unleashing a left-footed blast with his second touch in the fifth minute.
Wiley then played provider, setting up Luiz Araújo’s 12th-minute strike. He later capped a dominant opening 45 minutes for Atlanta United with his second goal in first-half stoppage time, slotting home a back-post finish from the edge of the six-yard box.
Wiley is the second Atlanta player to win Player of the Matchday this season, joining Almada (Matchday 1). They'll look to make it two wins in a row when hosting the Portland Timbers for a Matchday 4 showdown on Saturday (7:30 pm ET | MLS Season Pass).
The MLS Player of the Matchday presented by Continental Tire is selected each matchday of the regular season through both media and fan voting in a process conducted by MLS Communications. A panel of journalists from the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) comprises 75 percent of the vote, while a Twitter fan vote represents the remaining 25 percent of voting. NASR consists of members of print, television, radio, and online media.