What sets Martin Rodriguez apart, besides his combination of speed and technique, is the fact that – despite having a penchant for going for goal – he is always aware of the options around him. After being rebuffed by Universidad de Chile as a 12-year-old on account of his slight stature, La U's loss soon became Huachipato's gain. It was there that he learned his trade not only as a left winger, but also as a playmaker, a deep-lying anchorman and even on the right flank. He was just 16 when he burst on to the scene in 2011 and he won his first league title the following year.
Two major setbacks marred his 2013, however: his exclusion from the Chile squad that contested the South American Youth Championship and an injury that kept him out of the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey. His subsequent form compelled Jorge Sampaoli to bring him into the full international fold for the first friendlies after the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ and blood him against Haiti in September that year, but this proved a one-off. He was sparkling at Colo-Colo by the time Juan Antonio Pizzi recalled him for the Russia 2018 qualifiers in November 2016, although he did not end up playing. After pitching up at Cruz Azul in 2017, he carried on pressing his claim and forced his way into the reckoning for the FIFA Confederations Cup. Experiencing the tournament is expected to stand him in good stead for the future.