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Sounders lock up MVP candidate Obafemi Martins to multi-year extension

2014 U.S. Open Cup - Final

CHESTER, PA - SEPTEMBER 16: Obafemi Martins #9 of the Seattle Sounders FC celebrates an overtime goal against the Philadelphia Union during the 2014 U.S. Open Cup Final at PPL Park on September 16, 2014 in Chester, Pennsylvania. The Sounders won 3-1. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

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Obafemi Martins is going nowhere, as the 30-year-old has agreed to a multi-year extension that will keep him in Seattle.

General manager Adrian Hanauer announced the extension on Tuesday, locking Martins up with Clint Dempsey for years to come after a regular season that saw the second-year Sounder net 17 times and add 13 assists.

[ MLS: Power Rankings | Season awards ]

Seattle won the Supporters Shield over the weekend after clinching the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup last month.

An MLS Cup victory would give Martins and company a treble.


“I’m glad I’m still going to be with the team for a long time,” Martins told reporters following Seattle’s Tuesday practice. “I feel at home here so I hope to continue doing well and helping the team.”

“We’re very excited,” said Hanauer, who also addressed the media Tuesday at Starfire Soccer Complex. “Oba, obviously, has been fantastic this year, a huge part of the team. We’re happy to extend his deal, and hopefully he ends his career in Seattle. And who knows? Maybe he likes it so much he stays after [the extension is up].”

Martins told that his experience playing in the US has been an adjustment from living and playing overseas but also said being in a location where he feels happy has helped him elevate his game to this season’s level.

“I enjoyed the time I played in Europe,” Martins said. “But the fact I’m here, I think I’m enjoying my game more. The fact that I’m doing well, scoring goals, I’m glad. I’m happy.”

Martins previous best seasons were a pair of 11-goal campaigns for Inter Milan (2005) and Newcastle United (2007). He has also played in Russia, Germany and Spain, and has been capped 39 times for Nigeria.

Follow @nicholasmendola