Let’s take the time machine for a second and go back to February 2, 2017. What could have happened that was so important that it can still be remembered today? Josef Martínez leaves Turin to sign for Atlanta United in the MLSwhere he will become one of the most important players in the history of the American championship.
Many will remember him for his went to Turin. With the pomegranate, in fact, the devil of valenciaas he is nicknamed at home, he played two and a half seasons, between the summer of 2014 and the winter of 2017 precisely. If it is true that in Italy he did not leave a great memory of himself, it is also true that Turin probably did not have the patience to wait for Josef Martínez to explode.
From the injury to the desire to be decisive again
Martínez’s career has not always been easy. In the opening game of the 2020 season, the Venezuelan crashed his knee at 62 ‘in the game against Nashville: lbroken leg at the knee, goodbye to dreams of winning the title for Atlanta. The road to recovery was long as it always happens with this type of injury, the Venezuelan striker returned to the courts in 2021, recovering Atlanta on his shoulders with goals with 12 goals in 24 games.
Atlanta United will make its MLS debut against Kansas City on February 27. For Martínez it will be an important season to dedicate himself to overseas football: the goal is to be as devastating again as it was two years ago, before that damn March 2, 2020.
On the launch pad with Torino
Which, really, then, his adventure in Italy hadn’t even gone that bad. Especially the first two years with Gian Piero Ventura, who appreciated him very much. In Turin, the Venezuelan has been an extra lover many times as a substitute, thanks to his liveliness, and in 60 games he scored 13 goals: 3 in the 2014/15 Europa League, which had helped lead Granada to the round of 32 of the competition. In 2014 Urbano Cairo had spent 3 million to bring him to Torino from Young Boys, while two and a half seasons later the granados sold him to Atlanta United with a capital gain of 1.5 million since the Venezuelan striker was no longer part of the plans. from Sinisa Mihajlovic.
The explosion in the MLS
He landed in the MLS, with Atlanta United Jose Martinez He had a very important physical and technical growth and thus left a clear mark on the history of the American championship: 89 goals scored in 108 games, conquest of the USA title in 2018, in 2019 he triumphed in the US Open Cup and the Champions Cup. At the individual level, Martínez won the top scorer in Major League Soccer in 2018 with ben 31 goals scored, so many goals that made him win the MVP of the season award.
Josef Martinez in Atlanta is a true legend: on the streets of the city you can see many murals that portray him and in recent months they are also building a statue in his honor. “I want to die here” the striker told The Athletic after signing the extension of the contract until 2026 with Atlanta. “This is my home. I’ve said it many times, no one has as much feeling for this club as I do. I’ve been here since the first day of Atlanta history, we didn’t even have a field to play on. This is my home. “I’ll be here forever.”