ATLANTA UNITED

Atlanta United: Josef Martínez on his relationship with Gabriel Heinze

The Venezuelan striker confirmed that the rumors of him wanting out are not true and says he wants to retire in the MLS with Atlanta United.

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Atlanta United: Josef Martínez on his relationship with Gabriel Heinze

It has been a tough year for Josef Martínez with Atlanta United and the Venezuela national team. The 28-year-old striker missed the Copa América campaign because he tested positive for covid-19 and upon arrival to Atlanta he was separated from the team by former manager Gabriel Heinze.

Martínez reaffirms commitment to Atlanta Utd

After recovering from covid-19 it was reported that Martínez had been training on his own because of the coach's decision. Gabriel Heinze decided not to include him in the roster that played against the New England Revolution this past weekend and Atlanta United lost 1-0.

On Monday the bosses decided to part ways with Heinze and appointed Rob Valentino as the interim coach for the remainder of the 2021 MLS season. Atlanta United will face FC Cincinnati on Wednesday and Valentino did include Martínez in the roster for tomorrow’s game.

The relationship between Gabriel Heinze and the Venezuelan striker was so bad that multiple reports indicated that Martínez wanted out during the summer transfer window. But on Tuesday the 28-year-old spoke for the first time in months and reaffirmed his commitment to the Five Stripes.

“There wasn’t a problem with him [Heinze]. I respect the decision that the club has made and the issues were resolved. The first time I came here I said this is my club, this is my city and I love to be here,” Martinez said during the press conference with journalists via zoom. “I want to retire here. I love this club.”

"It was a complicated week for me because we're talking about your health," he said with the help of a translator. "But thanks to God, everything is resolved, and now we're here, thinking about [Wednesday's] game."