Panamanian National Team Member Cristian Martinez Loaned to Lights FC
Las Vegas, NV - Lights FC agreed to a loan with MLS side Chicago Fire that sends Panamanian midfielder Cristian Martinez to Las Vegas, pending league and federation approval. Martinez is a young winger with attacking qualities who has a bright future ahead of him after already being considered by his national team despite his young age.
Martinez becomes the sixth player to suit up with Lights FC after having played for their national team, joining Joel Huiqui (Mexico), Freddy Adu (U.S.A.), Daigo Kobayashi (Japan), Dejan Jakovi? (Canada), and Rodolfo Zelaya (El Salvador).
At the international level, Martinez made his debut with the Panamanian National Team in February 2016 against El Salvador in a friendly match. He played in a total of five games for his country in 2018, where he was named as part of Panama's preliminary 35 man roster squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, his country's first appearances in the most important soccer tournament in the world.
At 22 years old, Cristian Martinez already has 7 years of experience as a professional soccer player. He joined the youth team of his hometown's Chorrillo F.C. at the age of 8, being elevated to the club's first team in 2012.
In 2016 he made the transition to the United States by being loaned out to Major League Soccer's Columbus Crew, where he scored a goal in his debut. He played a total of three seasons with Columbus, making 27 appearances (14 starts) in league play and one postseason appearance.
Martinez was selected by the Chicago Fire in the 2018 MLS Waiver Draft, where he has 5 appearances in the current season. Last month he was called up to the U-22 Panama National Team, where he was a starter in both games that they played against El Salvador in a pre-Olympic qualifying series.
This won't be his first rodeo in USL Championship, as he was loaned from Columbus Crew to the Pittsburgh Riverhounds in 2016 and to FC Cincinnati in 2017.
• Discuss this story on the United Soccer League Championship message board...
United Soccer League Championship Stories from August 23, 2019
- Hounds Win at Home, Defeat Loudoun, 1-0 - Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC
- Loudoun United Fall to the Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1-0 on the Road - Loudoun United FC
- Three Things to Know: Nashville SC vs. Charleston Battery - Nashville SC
- Switchbacks FC Sign Pair of Colorado Rapids Homegrowns on Loan - Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC
- Energy FC Back Home Saturday to Take on Austin Bold FC - OKC Energy FC
- Orange County SC Look to Dethrone Real Monarchs - Orange County SC
- Match Preview: Legion FC at Bethlehem Steel FC - Sunday, August 25 - Birmingham Legion FC
- Copa Tejas Action at H-E-B Park as RGV FC and El Paso Locomotive FC Square Off - Rio Grande Valley FC Toros
- Real Monarchs SLC Wraps Two-Game Road Stretch against Orange County SC - Real Monarchs SLC
- Athletic Looks to Continue Momentum against ATLUTD2 - Hartford Athletic
- Memphis 901 FC Heads to Tampa Bay Tomorrow Night - Memphis 901 FC
- San Antonio FC Hosts Expansion Side New Mexico United this Saturday - San Antonio FC
- Panamanian National Team Member Cristian Martinez Loaned to Lights FC - Las Vegas Lights FC
- Republic FC Defender Shannon Gomez Undergoes Successful Surgery on Right Knee - Sacramento Republic FC
- Match Preview | Ottawa Fury FC vs Saint Louis FC | Aper=C3=A7u - Ottawa Fury FC
- Match Preview: ATL UTD 2 vs Hartford Athletic - Atlanta United 2
- Match Preview: #TBRvMEM - Tampa Bay Rowdies
- North Carolina FC Hopes to Keep Hot Streak Going at Louisville City FC on Saturday - North Carolina FC
- Preview: Nashville SC Looking to Rebound against Charleston Battery on Saturday Night - Nashville SC
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.
Other Recent Las Vegas Lights FC Stories
- Lights FC Heads to Southern California for Two-Match Road Trip
- 11-Year Major League Soccer Veteran MLS Cup Champion Quincy Amarikwa Signs with Lights FC
- Lights FC Crushes Orange County's Undefeated Record with 3-1 Win
- Lights FC Homestand Finishes Tuesday Night on National Television Via ESPN Deportes
- Lights FC Rise in Added Time for a Thrilling 3-3 Draw against Phoenix