New York City FC will have its hands full with Atlanta United Saturday.
You can say that in triplicate for Atlanta forward Josef Martínez.
Martinez was voted the Major League Soccer player of the week by the North American Soccer Reporters, it was announced Tuesday.
NYCFC will host Atlanta and Martinez at Yankee Stadium at 12:30 p.m. Saturday.
Martinez scored three goals in Atlanta’s 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Union in front of 45,140 fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium last Saturday. The 25-year-old tied a league record with his fifth career MLS hat-trick, accomplishing the feat in 34 matches. Atlanta sits first in the Eastern Conference standings with 29 points (9-3-2 record), while Martínez tops the league with 12 goals scored this season.
The Venezuela international began his day with a penalty kick goal in the 21stminute for a 1-0 Atlanta advantage (Watch Goal). Martínez scored again in the 49thminute to give Atlanta a 2-0 lead. Miguel Almirón threaded a pass between Union goalkeeper Andre Blake and a defender to an open Martínez, who finished with a deflection to the center of goal (Watch Goal).
Following a Philadelphia goal, Martínez completed his hat-trick in the 83rd minute to give Atlanta a 3-1 lead with a penalty kick goal just inside the left post (Watch Goal). In 34 career MLS regular-season matches, Martínez has scored 31 goals for a 0.91 goals-per-game average, the best in MLS history among players with at least 20 career goals.
The MLS player of the week is chosen each week of the regular season by members of the North American Soccer Reporters. The organization includes print, television, radio and online journalists who cover domestic men’s soccer in the United States and Canada