Atlanta United striker Josef Martinez will travel with the team for Saturday’s game at Vancouver, manager Gerardo Martino said Tuesday.
Martinez, out since late March after suffering a thigh injury while playing with the Venezuelan national team, will train with Atlanta United on Tuesday. He trained with the team for the first time since his injury Friday.
Martino said that Martinez will be eased back into playing time, making it unlikely that he will start Saturday’s game at BC Place.
The team is going to charter a flight (one of four flight segments allowed by MLS), which should reduce the time spent on an airplane for all of the players.
Martino said a decision on whether Martinez can play will be made in Vancouver.
Hector Villalba and Kenwyne Jones have filled in at striker in place of Martinez in the past nine games. Three of Villalba’s five goals have come at striker. Jones scored two in his four games at striker.
Martinez, 24, is tied for second on the team with five goals. They were scored in the season’s first three games.
Martinez was acquired on loan from Torino in Italy. The loan was announced as permanent following Atlanta United’s third game.
Martino said there’s a chance that midfielder Jacob Peterson, out since the fourth game, will travel to Vancouver.
Fullback Mark Bloom has a virus that may prevent him from being considered for the 18.
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