Meet #9, Martin Nunez
Martin Nunez, #9 for Minnesota Stars FC, is well known to many of the Dark Clouds. The Dark Clouds taunted him relentlessly throughout last season when he played for the Ft Lauderdale Strikers. Apparently, it worked.
“Playing the Minnesota Stars in the final, then coming here was a little weird for me to get traded here. I still had it [the final] in my head, so it was kind of tough,” said Nunez. “The players I’ve been talking to say that the fans really try to get in your head and they actually do since you can really hear them in the field. You can hear personal voices and not just the whole crowd. So that’s why it gets into your head. It really got into my head, you know, my rookie year I remember I was like, I should be talking back to the fans, then I realized, as a professional, that’s the fans’ job, so I tried to let that go.” Playing against the Stars, and dealing with the Dark Clouds, throughout the years, “was rough. You got to my head, to be honest with you. You did the job.”
Now that he’s here, with the Dark Clouds on his side, he’s happy to play for the Stars and looking forward to this season. “Personally, I really want to do well for myself, score a couple goals. As a team, obviously we all want to win. I hate losing, even in a practice game, I really hate losing more than I like winning. I feel that I’m here to try to help the team and win a championship again. Hopefully we can win another championship. I would like that. I haven’t won one yet. I got second place, but everybody forgets about the second place guy; no one remembers who was second place. No one knows who made it to the finals, only who won it.”
Martin (pronounced mar-TEEN instead of MART-in) was born in Uruguay and was ten years old when he moved to Miami with his family, including a twin sister. He’s in his fifth year as a pro, having played for Carolina, Puerto Rico, and Miami FC/Ft Lauderdale before coming to Minnesota.
Friendly and outgoing off the pitch, Martin is a pleasure to talk to. “I’m really outgoing, I enjoy what I do. I always give the best to whatever team I play for. It’s been fun for me just being on the field. Now that I’m here with the MN Stars and I know that the Dark Clouds have a really big impact with the team, I feel good. I really feel that the players need the fans to be there.”
For the final, many Dark Clouds traveled to Ft Lauderdale. Nunez said, “I’ve never seen nothing like Minnesota – to fly from one state to another state, especially in this league. I think it means a lot to the players.”
Nunez said one of the challenges for this season will be “for me to play against my former team, Ft Lauderdale Strikers. You always want to do well against your ex team, because you have a lot of things to prove.” He did well against them in the first matchup of the season, playing 77 minutes in the 3-1 victory on May 19, 2012.