A statement released by Jones’ public-relations firm shortly after the hiring was announced read, “I’m really happy that Martino has made the decision to join us at Atlanta United -- he’s played at all levels of football, he’s led Argentina to the top spot in the FIFA World Ranking, and he’s been at the coaching helm for one of the biggest clubs in the world, FC Barcelona. He is a leader in every sense of the word, and I respect him a lot.”
Jones, 31, signed with Atlanta United in July, 12 years after leaving his native country in play in England and Wales. He scored 40 goals in 195 Premier League games and added another 39 in the League Championship. He is one of seven players signed and loaned out by Atlanta United; he is with T&T's Central FC, which is competing in the same Concacaf Champions League group as Vancouver and Sporting Kansas City.
The big (6-foot-2, 185 pounds) striker represented T&T at the 2006 World Cup and has captained his country 15 times, including all six games in the semifinal round of Concacaf 2016 World Cup qualifying. He has scored 23 goals in 81 international appearances.
Other players signed by Atlanta United are Junior Burgos, Andrew Carleton, Chris McCann, Jeffrey Otoo, Alexander Tambakis, and Hector Villalba, who like Martino is a native of Argentina.