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
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 Canios
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: Weve inquired about
the lad Martin whos at Norwich but we cant afford
to bring him in unfortunately, and Gary Madine at Sheffield Wednesday
as well. So weve knocked on all the doors but we just havent
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
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.