Seattle Sounders striker Obafemi Martins has been in fine goalscoring form over the course of the 2014 MLS season, which could see him rewarded with the league MVP award.
Seattle Sounders striker Obafemi Martins is letting his production do the talking in his bid to win the 2014 MLS MVP award.
With 15 goals and 10 assist in 27 appearances so far, the Nigerian international is among the front-runners for the league’s top honour, with a brace in last weekend’s 4-2 home win over Chivas USA further enhancing his case.
Having helped the club claim their fourth US Open Cup title in six seasons earlier this month, Martins’ performances have also left Seattle sitting joint-top of the Supporters’ Shield standings with four games left before the post-season, and the former Newcastle United man is delighted to have made such a positive impact.
‘I remember when I came, I wanted to help the team score goals. I think that’s what I’m doing now,’ he told the club’s official website. ‘The 15 goals are not enough. We need to be on top and we need to score more goals.’
Arriving in the Pacific Northwest from Levante in March 2013 for $4 million, Martins was restricted to eight goals in 20 MLS matches during his debut season, but has since proven himself one of the league’s top all-round forwards with his blistering pace and finishing instincts, linking up with Fulham icon and USA captain Clint Dempsey to form a deadly strike-partnership.
‘Early in the year, he was one of the best scorers in the league and he just steps it up with more and more energy. It’s nice to have a guy like that,’ said midfielder Lamar Neagle.
‘I think every championship team has at least one guy and we have a couple. We have a ton of guys backing them up.’
The 29-year-old Martins faces strong competition for the MVP award from league top-scorer Bradley Wright-Phillips, LA Galaxy duo Robbie Keane and Landon Donovan, and dark horse candidate Lee Nguyen, but believes that a few more goalscoring outings over the coming weeks will do his odds the world of good.
‘We’ve been playing a lot of games and I’ve been trying to score goals and trying to win games. We still have four games left so we’ll keep going,’ he said.
‘Fifteen goals is the record and I’m happy, but at the same time, we have a lot of games to play and I’m ready to score more goals.’