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Chris Martin

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Norwich Career: 2004-2013 (117 appearances, 34 goals)
Current Club: Bristol Rovers
Date of Birth: 4/11/1988 (Beccles) 
Nationality: English / Scottish


On 27th March 2004, Norwich City Under-19s gave a debut to Under-15s striker Chris Martin in the 2-0 defeat to Chelsea. Then with the Under-16 squad, he made 3 Academy appearances in 2003/4. In January 2005, he was offered a scholarship with the Canaries that commenced at the beginning of the 2005/6 season. Chris comes from Beccles and has been with Norwich since the age of 10.

After impressing for the Under-18s during the 2006/7 season, he was given his debut by Peter Grant as a substitute in the 1-0 home defeat to Wolves on 30th January 2007. After appearing for City against Leeds on 3rd February, he was linked with a move to Tottenham as he was still technically an apprentice.

Chris scored his first senior goal for Norwich on 13th February 2007, netting the injury time winner in the FA Cup Fourth Round replay at home to Blackpool which City won 3-2. Chris made his full home debut in the 1-1 draw with Coventry on 24th February 2007 and scored City's goal. This was followed up with a goal at Luton on the 27th February which the Canaries won 3-2. He then scored in the 3-1 win at Barnsley on 3rd March and got the opener in Norwich's 2-1 home defeat to Derby on 6th March - also having a perfectly good goal disallowed.

Reports in the Sunday tabloids on 11th March 2007 speculated that Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson had noticed Martin and were leading the chase for his signature.

Despite attempts by Peter Grant for Chris to play for Scotland through his Glaswegian grandfather, Chris made his international debut for England's Under-19s on 20th March 2007 in a game against Turkey at Doncaster's Keepmoat Stadium. Replacing Everton's James Vaughan on 64minutes, Chris scored the only goal of the game three minutes from time.

Chris signed a three year professional contract with Norwich in early April 2007.

Out of favour for much of the 2007/8 season, he was linked in late February 2008 with a loan move to Crewe but this was rejected by Glenn Roeder

On 7th August 2008, Martin and teammate Michael Spillane were loaned to Luton Town for the entirity of the 2008/9 season days after they were omitted from City's first team squad photograph. Martin's agent Phil Sproson, of the Professional Footballers' Association, believes his client's move to the Hatters is exactly what he needs to kick-start his career:

“It is a good thing for Chris. He needs to find himself again. Mick Harford is a very good manager and a former striker so hopefully he will be able to get the best out of Chris. Glenn Roeder clearly doesn't fancy him so it's the best thing for Norwich and the player. I'm confident that he'll score goals at Luton, he's got bags of ability and this could be the catalyst he needs.”

However it will not be easy at Kennilworth Road. Luton lost their appeal against a 10-point deduction by the FA for financial irregularities, involving payments to agents. The decision means that Luton, who were also docked 20 points by the Football League for failing to comply with its insolvency policy, will start the 2008/9 season on minus 30 points. Martin could not prevent Luton from being relegated on 13th April 2009 into the Conference following a goalless draw with Chesterfield. . However he did play a key role as Luton won the Full Members Cup with a 3-2 win over Scunthorpe at Wembley, scoring Luton's opener.

Returning to Norwich, Chris made 48 appearances, scoring 23 goals (often critical ones such as the winner against Leeds on 27th March 2010) as Norwich won the 2009/10 League One title.

He was arrested and charged during the August 2010 Bank Holiday weekend following an incident in Wymondham.

On December 20th 2010, it was reported that Scotland manager Craig Levein had scouted Martin whose Scottish father made him eligible for a call-up despite playing for England at Under-19 level. Levein confirmed: “We are aware of Chris and he is on our radar.”

The second half of Chris' 2010/11 season was curtailed with injury and he ended the season with 32 appearances and 6 goals

Afer starting three of Norwich's first four games in the Premiership, Chris dropped out of selection and was loaned to Crystal Palace on 15th November 2011 until 2nd January 2012. "Chris needs to get some games," Canaries boss Paul Lambert told the club website. "And that's why I decided it was the right thing to send him out on loan. Palace have made a good start under Dougie Freedman this season, and if he does play it will be at a good competitive level, which is important." His loan was extended to the beginning of February 2012. On Transfer Deadline Day, this was extended until the end of the season with reports that Palace were keen to make the switch permanent.

On 15th November 2012, Chris was loaned to Swindon Town until 5th January 2013. Martin said "It's been tough not being involved. It can be hard to get your head around not playing on a weekend. That's the main reason I've come here. I'm coming in to the last six months of my contract so it's even more important that I'm playing games."

On 7th January 2013, Martin signed a 28-day loan extension at Swindon Town, keeping him at the County Ground until February 2nd 2013. Martin made eight appearances for Paolo Di Canio’s side during his initial three-month loan spell. Despite not yet scoring for Swindon, Martin had helped guide the Robins’ to fifth in League One.

Martin returned to Carrow Road having scored once for Swindon in twelve appearances. He was left out of Norwich's 25-man Premier League squad and was the subject of an enquiry from Tranmere who withdrew claiming on 9th February 2013 that it was too expensive. Manager Ronnie Moore said: “We’ve inquired about the lad Martin who’s at Norwich but we can’t afford to bring him in unfortunately, and Gary Madine at Sheffield Wednesday as well. So we’ve knocked on all the doors but we just haven’t been able to get somebody to come in yet.”

Chris joined Derby on loan on 22nd February 2013, making his debut the following day in a 2-1 defeat to Watford. He scored two goals in 13 appearances for The Rams.

Out of contract at the end of the 2012/13 season, Chirs joined Derby on 9th May 2013 on a free transfer. “It was great to bring him in on loan and have a look at him at close quarters,” said Derby manager Nigel Clough. “To get a player of his quality – and on a free transfer as well – is a good deal for the club.”

After a prolific season for Derby in which Martin scored 25 goals and helped them reach the play-off final (losing to QPR), he was called up by Scotland on 13th May 2014 for the international friendly with Nigeria at the end of May 2014. He made his debut in that game.

After Derby signed a new forward line of Matej Vydra, Ikechi Anya and James Wilson, Martin was allowed to join Fulham on a season-long loan on 31st August 2016. The Cottagers, who reportedly paid £2million for the loan, can buy Martin at the end of the loan for £9million. Martin has scored 63 goals for the Rams in 161 appearances. He made his Fulham debut on 10th September 2016 in a 1-0 home defeat to Birmingham.

In January 2018, he was linked with a move to Sunderland or Norwich according to the Northern Echo. In the end he joined Reading on loan on 31st January 2018 until the end of the season. He had not played since 9th December. He made 10 appearances scoring once.

Martin was loaned again on 31st August 2018 joining Hull City for the 2018/19 season. He made 31 appearances, scoring twice.

Martin left Derby at the beginning of August 2020 depsite playing 39 games in 2019/20 and scoring 12 goals. His Derby career total is 225 games and 76 goals. He had refused a new deal.

On 3rd September 2020 Chris signed for Bristol City on a two year contract. "He's a proven and experienced goal-scorer at Championship level and we can't wait to get him on the grass with us. Having met with him, I was impressed by his hunger and desire to play for Bristol City and I am sure he will make a significant contribution to what we want to achieve."" said Bristol City head coach Dean Holden

Chris was released by Bristol City on 31st January 2023 having played 88 games for the Robins, scoring 15 goals.

On 6th February 2022 he signed for QPR on a contract until the end of the 2022/23 season. QPR Head coach Neil Critchley said "He's a very good footballer, he has excellent technical ability and he knows his game. He brings a physical presence to the top end of the pitch. He also has that experience so he knows what is required during the game, he has that know-how and nous."

After leaving QPR at the end of his contract, he received a number of enquiries from League One side and trained with Bristol Rovers in September 2023. He had scored four goals in 16 appearances for QPR. Rovers were also linked with former Norwich forward Lewis Grabban. Chris signed a short-term deal with Rovers until January 2024 on 27th September 2023. He made his debut three days later in a 2-0 away defeat to Peterborough.

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