Norwich City striker Martin out to repay pal Cody
Michael Bailey Chris Martin thanked Norwich City team-mate Cody McDonald for helping him to his four-goal haul at Paulton Rovers - and may get the chance to return the favour tomorrow night.
Chris Martin thanked Norwich City team-mate Cody McDonald for helping him to his four-goal haul at Paulton Rovers - and may get the chance to return the favour tomorrow night.
The Canaries secured an FA Cup second round tie at either Morecambe or Carlisle after disappointing those willing a historic giant killing at Winterfield Road with a comfortable 7-0 demolition of their Zamaretto League hosts, and will hope to keep their recent good work going by advancing to the area semi-final of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy at Swindon.
McDonald could get the chance to add to his winner at Gillingham in the last round of the Trophy with a start alongside Martin, after Grant Holt's fifth booking of the season ruled him out of the midweek trip to the County Ground.
And that would be due reward for unselfishly providing Martin with his hat-trick strike at Paulton on Saturday, after playing in Holt for City's third at Stockport in the league a week earlier.
“I just thanked him (McDonald) in the dressing room for it - it was good unselfish play; he's seen players in good positions - as with Holt last week, so he has done very well when he has come on,” said Martin, who added to his 24th minute finish with three goals in seven second-half minutes.
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Now City will be hoping one success in knockout competition will inspire them to success in their southern area quarter-final in Wiltshire.
“It breeds confidence in the squad and whoever goes out on Tuesday I am sure will be confident of a good performance,” said the City striker, who is not planning on asking his manager for a midweek rest. “I want to play as much as I can, so we will have to wait and see,” he added.
Martin was Luton's top scorer with 13 goals during his loan spell at Kenilworth Road last season and notched his first professional hat-trick at Winterfield Road, taking him to nine in all competitions since the summer.
“It's massive obviously; it's against a lower league team, but goals are goals and I'll take them, and it's nice to get my first hat-trick. I was frustrated a couple of times, I think one time where it didn't get squared to me and lost my temper a little bit, but I suppose it's because I see the goals out there and saw I possibly could go home with a match ball, and luckily in the end I did.”
Wes Hoolahan and Grant Holt's brace completed the scoring on Saturday - between them, the trio have now scored 30 of City's 43 goals this season - but Martin is not about to take his place in City manager Paul Lambert's starting line-up for granted.
“We're very confident going into every game that we can get on the scoresheet between the three of us once or twice, and I think that has showed,” said Martin. “I know I'm part of the squad and that is a big thing, but I'm not taking anything for granted in terms of my starting place.
“I need to keep performing and I'm sure when I don't I'll soon by out of the team, so there's still that little bit of pressure there for me to perform every week and keep scoring.”
Martin gave credit to Paulton for putting the game on at their own ground - and even providing a playing surface that put Stockport's to shame last week.
“I think it was probably even a bit better than Stockport was last week,” added the Norwich striker. “We could get the ball down and play a little bit on it, so credit to Paulton for getting it ready like they did.
“I played at places last year at Luton, probably not quite as small as this, but places like Accrington which is quite similar, so it was nothing new really.
“I think we could basically touch every person in the changing room between us, so it was quite small, but you just have to put those things to the back of your mind and go out there and do a job.
“I know it sounds boring but that's what you've got to do.”