No truth in Martin link - Roeder

Norwich City manager Glenn Roeder today rejected reports that striker Chris Martin was a target for a loan move to League One strugglers Crewe.

City manager Glenn Roeder has rejected reports that Chris Martin was a target for a loan move to League One strugglers Crewe - and repeated his assertion that the young striker had work to do to regain a first team place.

Crewe manager Steve Holland is believed to be looking to reinforce his attack but Roeder said there had been no inquiry.

He said: “I know Steve Holland really well. I did my Pro licence with Steve last year, a fantastic human being and an excellent coach, and a quiet man. He would definitely have rung me up - 100 per cent he would have done.”

Martin, 19, was given his last first-team outing for the Canaries in the FA Cup against Bury at Carrow Road on January 5.

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He has made 10 first team appearances for City this season without scoring. His last senior goal came against Derby in March last year.

“At the moment we're operating with three strikers and Chris trying to break into that three,” said Roeder. “He needs to do a lot of hard work. He needs to lose a lot of weight. He's lost seven or eight pounds in the last 10 days and he needs to lose more. He needs to run around more, needs to be sharper.

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“The young loanees who have come here from the Premiership clubs have given Michael Spillane and Chris Martin something to think about.

“Those two should be looking at the 18-year-olds, 19-year-olds we've got here from the Premiership clubs and saying 'Hold on a minute, I've got to improve' to have a career at Norwich.

“I've got no favourites. I am desperate for Chris Martin and Michael Spillane to have long careers at Norwich. I don't dislike them as people. I get on well with them, but I'm not letting them get away with low standards and I'll push them as hard as I have to push them, but they've got to show me that they're prepared to be pushed and to respond. If they are, they'll probably be OK. If they're not, we'll carry on with our loans.

“I'm making life tough for them at the moment, on purpose. It's all been too easy.”

Roeder also said there was no truth in stories suggesting he was trying to sign Newcastle centre-half David Edgar on loan.

“That's rubbish. I know David Edgar, he played for me in the youth team like Matty Pattison did at Newcastle, but there has been no approach.”

Defender Matthew Bates, whose loan was cut short by a serious knee injury, faces surgery next week.

“He's having an operation next Wednesday,” said Roeder. “I've stayed in touch with him every four or five days. He's being operated on down in London by a top, top surgeon. I've got every confidence that the surgeon who's going to do the knee will put it right and he'll be playing again and moving on with his career.

“He'll fight back. He's of the right mentality. He has come to terms with the injury and that he faces eight or nine months of rehab.”

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