Midfielder José Andrés Martínez has been making his presence known on the Venezuelan national team in Copa América this summer. Martinez earned his national team debut on June 3rd in a World Cup qualification group stage match against Bolivia. In Copa América play, Martínez has started in three of four matches and came off the bench in the team’s most recent game.
In the tournament, Venezuela is 0-2-2 and has only scored a total of two goals while being shutout in three of those matches. Martínez recorded one assist in Venezuela’s draw against Ecuador as he is involved in 50% of the team’s goals. Martínez also picked up one yellow card in the tie against Colombia. His ability to wreak havoc and make it difficult for star players in the midfield has given Venezuela a boost defensively.
The Venezuelan international played the right midfield position and this could be a spot where manager Jim Curtin slots him moving forward. The 26-year-old still has some room to grow but he has shown that he can compete with some top international and club players in the MLS. He is extremely versatile in where he can play in the midfield, but his experience has aided him in settling into his respective role on the Union.
Although Martínez has to work on making smarter challenges and avoid being booked, his aggressive playstyle and tenacity have led him to make a big impact for the Boys in Blue. Every team in the league needs a player like Martínez to put in the dirty work and run box to box in order to assist the team both offensively and defensively. Fans certainly appreciate Martínez’s work rate and hustle each game because he always puts his body on the line in key moments of the game.
The talented midfielder has made five appearances for Philadelphia this season and his role has been crucial in helping the team punch their ticket to the Concacaf Champions League semifinals. He has provided to be a phenomenal signing and it seems as if he has not reached his potential yet which is great news for Union fans. Here’s hoping that “El Brujo” can continue to impress on the field and make an impact for both Venezuela and the Union.
"Featured Image: @JoseAndresMT8 on Twitter"
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