After being loaned out to USL expansion side Hartford Athletic in April, Minnesota United midfielder Collin Martin was recalled for the Loons’ 1-0 friendly defeat to Hertha Berlin this week and said afterward he believes he'll eventually return to MNUFC full-time this season.
Martin also said he was the one to request the lower-division loan.
“I thought it would be better if I had a fresh start somewhere maybe in the USL,” he said, “and so I just had my agent start looking around. And Hartford was the first one to express interest, they wanted me right away, so I was like alright, let do it.”
Martin made 23 appearances — 12 starts — over his first two seasons with Minnesota, but he has not seen a minute of MLS action in 2019. Featuring at holding mid and right back, he played all 90 against Hertha, a club that finished 11th in the recently-concluded Bundesliga campaign.
He expects to return temporarily for the club's coming U.S. Open Cup commitments, but doesn't feel the need yet to reach out to coach Adrian Heath and GM Manny Lagos about their longer-term plans for him.
“I don’t think there’s much to say from me. If they want to talk and tell me when they want me back,” Martin said, “we have a schedule for the next six weeks and it’s all tentative obviously for what games I can get in or at least have a lot of games with Hartford. It’ll give a better base when I’m here permanently. I know it’s announced as a season-long loan, but I’ll be here eventually for the rest of the season.”
'cause love looks better in color... pic.twitter.com/Y2IxiZKSjq— Minnesota United FC (@MNUFC) May 23, 2019
Heath said he was pleased with Martin’s performance against Hertha Berlin, which he said owed partly the match fitness he has gained with Hartford.
“He proved in the first half today he’s a good footballer,” Heath said. "He’d be the first to say, and he’s just said it, he’s thankful he’s had them 90 minutes over the last few weeks playing. So we’ll assess Collin’s situation as everybody’s. We’ll sit down and we’ll see what we have and what we haven’t got in the next week or two. 10 days. Obviously we’ve got games coming up, Open Cup, etc.”