It has been an up-and-down first season in Atlanta for Pity Martinez. The 2018 South American Footballer of the Year had just five goals and nine assists in his first season with the Five Stripes and traded barbs with head coach Frank de Boer earlier this season. More recently, he was dropped from De Boer’s starting XI on Decision Day presented by AT&T and did not appear off the bench.
On Saturday, in Atlanta’s Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoff match against the New England Revolution, Martinez will be starting on the bench again. De Boer decided to leave Ezequiel Barco in the starting lineup after the 20-year-old started and played 63 minutes on Decision Day. It was Barco’s 11th start of the season.
“I always put the team in what — in my point of view and in good conversation with my staff — which team can have the most chance to win,” said De Boer earlier this week. “If it’s with both [Barco and Pity] then it’s with both. If it’s with one of them, it’s with one of them. I will choose what I think is the best chance that we can win the game. It doesn’t always mean you put your best players on the pitch, but in my point of view, you put your best team on the pitch.”
Joining Pity on the bench is Eric Remedi, who is in the starting lineup for the third straight match. On the backline, Michael Parkhurst replaced Miles Robinson, who suffered a hamstring injury while on international duty with the US men’s national team.
Saturday, October 19 at 1:00pm
— Atlanta United FC (@ATLUTD) October 19, 2019
On the other side, Scott Caldwell replaces Luis Caicedo in central midfield for the Revolution. Caicedo started 22 of the Revs’ last 24 matches while Caldwell has played 90 minutes just once since May 4.
— X- New England Revolution (@NERevolution) October 19, 2019