Tata Martino and players spoke with reporters Friday morning to give us some further insight into the status of certain players for Sunday’s bout against the Portland Timbers. We received good and bad news.
Josef Martinez: The prolific striker is available for Sunday. Martinez suffered a broken nose last week against the Columbus Crew after colliding with a defender while jumping for a header that ultimately led to his goal. He exited the match at halftime and missed the midweek US Open Cup matchup against the Chicago Fire. If he was immediately available even after messing up his hand a few weeks ago, a broken nose was likely never going to hold him back.
We’ll also see the Venezuelan sporting a new look this weekend. Martinez went into detail about his mask.
“I feel good. It was worth it to score a goal. I’m still waiting for the mask that I want. Hopefully I look like Batman. It affects me a little bit because I’m not used to wearing it while I’m playing. Sometimes it covers my eyes and it’s a little tougher to see when the ball is coming. The doctor says I have to wear it for six weeks.”
He also added that he will no longer wear a cast on his arm.
“It still hurts, but I don’t want to use it anymore. One cast at a time.”
Chris McCann: Martino announced that the Irishman is unavailable for Sunday after missing the last four matches due to a hamstring injury. Mikey Ambrose has played well as of late, so it’s nice to know Atlanta can go down two left backs/wingbacks in Greg Garza and McCann and still have a solid option to start.