Nov 11, 2018 Atlanta: Atlanta United forward Josef Martinez pumps his fist after scoring his first of two goals against New York City during their MLS Eastern Conference Semifinal playoff match on Sunday, Nov. 11, 2018, in Atlanta. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com
Photo: ccompton@ajc.com/Curtis Compton
Photo: ccompton@ajc.com/Curtis Compton

Atlanta United’s Martinez signs through 2023

Josef Martinez will be an Atlanta United player through the 2023 season after signing a five-year contract extension.

The team announced the move to secure the 2018 MLS MVP on Wednesday.

The team didn’t disclose Martinez’s new salary. He made $1.4 million last season, according to the MLS Players Association.

The striker set a league record for goals during the regular season (31) and an entire season (35) last year in becoming the first player in league history to be named MVP of the All-Star Game, season and MLS Cup.

“This means a lot to me because of the affection that the fans have shown me, that the fans show all of the players,” Martinez said in a statement from the team. “It’s unique. They recognize the effort that you give and they know you did everything to win, and I think that’s why we love playing here. I have to thank everyone. My teammates, the city, my family and friends, because this is a dream I’ve always had. I’ve said before that I don’t want to go anywhere because this is my home. You can expect more work, more intensity, because that’s who I am. I want to win. I want to do everything for my teammates and for the city.”

A mix of speed, intelligence and technical ability, Martinez has scored 50 goals in 54 appearances the past two seasons. Among his records includes career hat tricks (6).

“Josef is an outstanding player and I’m very excited to have him committed long-term to the club,” manager Frank de Boer said in a statement from the team. “As a manager, he’s the type of player you want on your team because he is intensely focused and you can count on him every time he steps on the field. I’m looking forward to working with him and to continuing the great success he’s had with Atlanta United.”

The league’s highest paid players last season were Toronto’s Sebastian Giovinco ($7.1 million) and Michael Bradley ($6.5 million). Zlatan Ibrahimovic reportedly agreed to a contract with the L.A. Galaxy during the offseason that will pay him at least $7 million per season.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.

X