Atlanta United forward Josef Martínez can’t stop breaking records. Last season, the 26-year-old Venezuelan shattered the MLS single-season scoring record with 31 goals, four more than the previous record of 27. On Sunday, he added two more records to his collection with this towering header against NYCFC:
That header extended Martínez’s goal-scoring streak to 10 consecutive matches, a new league record. In those 10 games, Martínez has scored a total of 15 times and helped Atlanta win six of the 10 matches. For the season, Martínez is currently sitting at 20 goals, three behind the 23 of LAFC’s Carlos Vela in the Golden Boot race. (For those interested, Zlatan Ibrahimović is in third with 16, though his shit-talking has definitely been top of the league.)
In his three seasons in Atlanta, Martínez has scored 70 goals, which sets yet another record; before Sunday’s brace (Martínez added a penalty later on in the match against NYCFC, redeeming himself for that awful spot-kick last month), he was tied at 68 with Bradley Wright-Phillips for most goals scored in three consecutive MLS seasons. Martínez is clearly one of the best goalscorers MLS has ever seen, and if he sticks around long enough, he very well might go down as the very best. Martínez already owns essentially every record he could reasonably be expected to have in less than three full years stateside. The one he will be chasing from now until he decides to leave MLS will be Chris Wondolowski’s all-time goals scored record (153).
Maybe Martínez won’t stay in MLS long enough to break that record, and it will be interesting whether his exploits attract the attention of any European clubs that might want to give him a second shot there. In that sense, if he keeps hitting the back of the net at a pace of almost a goal every game, the only thing that could keep him from MLS’s all-time record is if he scores his way into the big leagues.