Atlanta United Bring in JJ Williams as Replacement For Injured Josef Martinez

JJ Williams 33 surrounded by Orlando City's players. Photo by Dorn Byg/CSM/Shutterstock

Atlanta United is turning to USL Championship for help in the wake of injury that sidelined their star forward Josef Martinez for the rest of the season. The team announced on Monday that they signed JJ Williams from Birmingham Legion FC.

Williams is expected to give Atlanta more depth in attack, at least until the team manages to find a more experienced solution on the position. The 22-year-old has seven MLS appearances as a member of Columbus Crew SC, but is yet to score his first goal in the league.

“JJ is someone that had been on our radar over the offseason, and we’re pleased to add him to our roster,” said Atlanta United vice president and technical director Carlos Bocanegra. “He is coming off a strong season with Birmingham and will provide additional competition to our attack.”

JJ Williams turned pro in 2019 when he was selected 18th overall in MLS SuperDraft by Columbus. However, he spent most of the season on loan with Legion, where he played 23 games and scored eight goals.

After the end of the season, Williams was waived by Crew, but his rights were still owned by MLS. The league ended up loaning him to Legion, but kept an option to bring him back if a Major League Soccer team offers him a contract.