Editorial (December 14, 2017) – Many Venezuelan players have recently chosen to play in the United States to establish themselves early on in their careers.
José Hernández Joins Forces with Fellow Venezuelan Josef Martínez in Atlanta
Now it’s the time for José Hernández, a young 20-year-old defender who will join forces with his fellow Venezuelan Josef Martinez Atlanta United FC.
Hernández plays primarily as a left back and he proved his versatility in the Venezuelan League with Caracas FC in the three seasons he played for them.
“We identified José as one of the young talented defenders in South America and we’re thrilled that he’s committed to continuing his development with our club,” Atlanta United Vice President and Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra said in a club statement.
“In addition to his experience in first-team matches at Caracas, he’s played in big matches internationally, including this year’s FIFA U-20 World Cup final against England. He’s an aggressive 1v1 defender and has the ability to get involved in the attack,” he added.
Feliz de llegar a este grandioso club y asumir este gran reto. Agradecido con @secasports por el respaldo y hacer posible este paso tan importante en mi carrera que asumo con muchísima ilusión y el compromiso siempre de dejar en alto a mi querida VENEZUELA. ¡Sé que en Atlanta hay muchos venezolanos, allá nos vemos! ??⚽?? ¡vamos! @atlutd #uniteandcoquer
Hernández has improved at both the international and club level. Internationally, the defender has played with the U-17 and was a member of the generation who finished in second place at the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup in South Korea.
In that tournament, the young player impressed with his aggressiveness and abilities to help his team in the attack. He played the 90 minutes in the loss against England in Venezuela’s first-ever World Cup final.
This season he started 14 matches with Caracas, and in total, he played in 25 games since signing with the capital club. Now the wing back has taken the international jump.
Teaming up with Josef
Hernandez will be the new teammate of Josef Martínez, the leader scorer for Atlanta United last year with 19 goals. He finished fourth in the league Golden Boot race.
Martínez will have a close colleague, they both have been involved with the Venezuelan national team system, despite Hernandez not yet making an appearance for the senior national team.
Hernández can get himself a spot in the starting line up as he can also play in the midfield an at right back. His versatility could be an asset to the MLS club.
The youngster will surely gain more experience at the side of the other newest acquisitions for Atlanta, defender Gbenga Arokoyo, midfielder Jeff Larentowicz (who just re-signed with the club), left back Greg Garza (also re-signed) and the center back/right Franco Escobar.
Atlanta also made a splash in getting midfielder Darlington Nagbe on a transfer from Portland Timbers to help Martínez offensively.