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FC Tulsa Signs Two Former Cuba National Team and Miami FC Forwards to 2020 Roster

December 17, 2019 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - FC Tulsa News Release

TULSA - FC Tulsa is adding more dynamic goalscoring in 2020 with two former Cuba national team forwards. Ariel Martínez and Darío Suárez, both from new USL Championship member Miami FC, have been signed to FC Tulsa's 2020 roster, pending league and federation approval. The two players are the first new members of the roster which now totals 11 players, including nine returning players from the 2019 team.

Martínez, 33, is a prolific striker and Cuba national team veteran who made 54 appearances for his country in his international career, totaling 11 goals and two assists. His best international performance of his career came in the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup when he netted a hat trick in Cuba's final Group stage game against Belize to advance to the Quarterfinals.

"Ariel has the qualities to be one of the most significant signings in the USL Championship this season," said FC Tulsa head coach Michael Nsien. "Ariel can pull the strings and set the tempo with his passing and movement, as well as the goalscoring ability to finish plays off himself. He works tirelessly off the ball to help his team either regain possession or maintain possession of the ball. There's no doubt with the signing of Ariel, we are making a statement that FC Tulsa has the potential to have one of the deadliest attacks in the league."

In the last four years with Miami FC, Martínez has scored 23 goals with 16 assists, helping Miami claim eight titles in that span. His most recent season was his best as he scored nine goals while adding six assists to propel Miami to both the NISA regular season and East Coast championship. Before joining Miami FC, Martínez played for the Charleston Battery of the USL Championship in 2015, making one appearance in a playoff match. From 2005-2015, the forward suited up for his hometown Sancti Spiritus in the top division of professional soccer in Cuba.

"I am very happy to belong to this new project with beautiful Tulsa and its new colors," said Martínez through a translator. "I'm very eager to know the city and all of the fans of the club. I am sure it will only grow."

Suárez, 27, has been teammates with Martínez at both the domestic and international levels. He has four Cuba national team appearances, two in friendlies and two in the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

"With any team that has aspirations to make a playoff run and compete for a championship, you need goals," said Nsien. "You have to find multiple ways of scoring and do it consistently. With the addition of Darío, we've added another consistent scorer to our attack. He is an ambitious player that has pace and flair with goal production. He can attack from multiple positions which builds on our concept of being fluid and mobile in the attacking third. We will create an environment where players with the ability and tools of Darío can succeed."

In his two seasons and 34 appearances with Miami FC, Suárez scored 21 goals, the most on the club in that span, while adding five assists.

"I am very excited to play for Tulsa," said Suarez. "This will be an amazing year with an ambitious project to win titles."

Both Martínez and Suárez add to a stable of forwards for FC Tulsa that includes returners Marlon, Tobenna Uzo and Panin Boakye.


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