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Atlanta United announce Josef Martinez's season is over, sign Mexican forward Erick Torres

The team made the announcements Friday.

ATLANTA — Josef Martinez will sit out the rest of the season as he works to come back from a torn ACL, Atlanta United announced Friday, and they've already found a replacement.

The team announced the signing of Erick "Cubo" Torres on Friday, a Mexican international player coming over from Liga MX's Club Tijuana.

Torres comes in as needed reinforcement after the team failed to score a single goal without Martinez during the "MLS is Back" tournament.

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Torres, 26, is a proven MLS goalscorer - he struck 14 goals in 31 matches for Houston in his last season in MLS, in 2017. He's since played in Mexico with U.N.A.M-Pumas and Tijuana.

In 2014, he also scored 15 goals in 29 MLS matches for Chivas USA.

He will bring some much-needed punch to Atlanta, who struggled to mount much of an attack with team MVP Martinez injured throughout the "MLS is Back" tournament, which saw them lose all three of their matches.

Credit: AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

“Cubo is a natural goalscoring forward who will bolster our frontline and we’re pleased to add a player of his quality to the team,” Atlanta United Vice President and Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra said in a release posted to the team's site.

Torres was much-hyped earlier in his career when he started by scoring early and often with Guadalajara Chivas, one of Mexico's biggest clubs, as a teenager. He has dealt with injuries and had uneven stints back in his home country, though, and hasn't played for the Mexican national team since 2017.

The forward has at times gone through scoring droughts stateside, as well, including failing to net for Houston in either 2015 or 2016 in 22 combined MLS matches. 

The last two seasons with Tijuana, he scored seven goals in 37 total matches.

But Atlanta will not need him to be a star, just a reliable threat in Martinez's absence.

“He has consistently shown his finishing abilities in MLS, Liga MX and on the international stage, and we expect him to immediately contribute to the second half of our season," Bocanegra said.


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