Martinez’s first ACL reconstruction was done at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in March 2020. He had three surgeries in December of the same year to clean scar tissue and an infection. Martinez said last year that he briefly considered retiring then. Pineda said that Martinez hasn’t mentioned retiring when the two spoke earlier this week.
“I don’t want him to even think about it,” Pineda said.
Martinez has two goals and two assists this season. He scored 77 goals during the 2017-19 seasons and was named MLS MVP in 2018, which is when the team won the MLS Cup.
Pineda said the team expects Martinez to return to Atlanta next week.
Atlanta United has eight games scheduled during the time period that Martinez is expected to miss. The first is Sunday at Charlotte.
Pineda said that Martinez was experiencing pain before last week’s D.C. United game in which he wanted to start. He was subbed off in the second half.
“So sometimes when I read some criticism toward him, you guys have to take in consideration that he’s been playing with pain,” Pineda said. “And that is not easy. So we are hopeful that with the surgery, he can clean that up and hopefully he can be back to 100% pain free, and that he can be obviously the normal Josef Martinez that we all know.”
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Atlanta United’s 2022 MLS schedule
Feb. 27 Atlanta United 3, Sporting KC 1
March 5 Colorado 3, Atlanta United 0
March 13 Atlanta United 2, Charlotte 1
March 19 Atlanta United 3, Montreal 3
April 2 Atlanta United 1, D.C. United 0
April 10 at Charlotte, 1:30 p.m., ABC, ESPN Deportes
April 16 vs. Cincinnati, 6 p.m., Peachtree TV
April 24 at Miami, 1 p.m., ESPN
April 30 at Montreal, 4 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
May 7 vs. Chicago, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
May 15 vs. New England, 1:30 p.m., ESPN
May 21 at Nashville, 7:30 p.m. FOX
May 28 vs. Columbus Crew, 7 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
June 19 vs Miami, 4 p.m., ESPN2
June 25 at Toronto, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
June 30 at New York Red Bulls, 8 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
July 3 at NYCFC, 5 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
July 9 vs. Austin, 7 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
July 13 vs. Real Salt Lake, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
July 17 vs. Orlando, 3 p.m., ABC
July 24 at L.A. Galaxy, 9:30 p.m., FS1
July 30 at Chicago, 5 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
August 6 vs. Seattle, 3 p.m., ABC
August 13 at Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m. BSSO/BSSE
August 17 vs. New York Red Bulls, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
August 21 at Columbus, 6 p.m., FS1
August 28 vs. D.C. United, 4 p.m., UNIV
August 31 at Philadelphia, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 4 at Portland, 5:30 p.m., FOX
Sept. 10 vs. Toronto, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Sept. 14 at Orlando, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE
Sept 17 vs. Philadelphia, 3:30 p.m., UniMas
Oct. 1 at New England, 1 p.m., UniMas
Oct. 9 vs. NYCFC, TBD, BSSO/BSSE