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Josef Martinez and the Golden Boot

A way too early prediction from MLS Senior Editor Andrew Wiebe

Dave Williamson Photography

Ah yes, the MLS preseason. A time of hope. A time when anything is possible. A lot of questions will be answered this year, like: Can Will Bruin be a good player for more than three games this season? Has Minnesota United built a roster that could take it to the NASL Final this year? Will Darlington Nagbe finally remember that he is one of the most technically gifted players in the league when he gets within 18 yards of the goal? How many points will Atlanta United win the league by?

Andrew Wiebe of ExtraTime Radio has the answer to one question: Who will win the Golden Boot? In the piece, Wiebe orders the potential winners of the award with Ola Kamara of the Columbus Crew first, Fanendo Adi from Portland second, Toronto’s Jozy Altidore third, and Josef Martinez representing Atlanta fourth.

I for one find this list preposterous. I mean look at this chip...

and this nifty bit of footwork...

and this diving header...

and this diving header...

And then consider for a minute that Jozy Altidore hasn’t played a full season since joining MLS in 2015, Fanendo Adi has never scored more than 16 goals in two full seasons in the league, and while Ola Kamara averaged .64 goals a game last season, Josef Martinez has averaged 1.33 goals so far this preseason which projects to 45.3 goals over 34 games. Clearly, Wiebe is wrong.

Of course, Martinez may not keep his torrid pace up throughout the season, and his place in the lineup may not be exactly clear with Kenwyne Jones competing with him for playing time, but his performance in the preseason has certainly earned him a place on this list.