Premier League - Martin rallying call to players

Club captain Russell Martin has called on Norwich's senior players to stand up and be counted as they look to start climbing the Barclays Premier League table.

PA Sport Report
Premier League - Martin calls for Norwich unity

View photo

Russell Martin, Norwich City (PA Photos)

The Canaries head to Manchester City on Saturday on the back of a 3-0 drubbing by Manchester United at Old Trafford in the League Cup.

It was a third defeat in the last four for Chris Hughton's side, who could only draw 0-0 at home to Cardiff last weekend which saw them stay in the bottom three.

Norwich have spent more than £20million over the summer to avoid being embroiled in another dogfight for survival.

Club record signing Ricky van Wolfswinkel, though, will miss Saturday's match because of a foot injury while England Under-21 winger Nathan Redmond will be assessed on a hip problem.

Martin, 27, is one of the few players left at the Norfolk club who helped them climb up from League One under Paul Lambert.

The former Wycombe and Peterborough man, signed in January 2010, believes there is enough about the current group to pull clear of danger once again.

"We have set high standards in the past four years. The team spirit is still very much there and it is a humble group," Martin told a press conference.

"At present the results are not quite going for us, but within that group the senior players need to make their voices heard.

"We have to make sure we have that strong identity that, in my opinion, has meant no team has worked harder than us in the past when we go out on the pitch.

"That is what we need to get back to and if we do, we have more than enough quality to improve on last year."

Martin believes Norwich must tighten up at the back after shipping four goals at Arsenal and three at home to Chelsea to slowly build themselves a platform for improvement following five defeats in the opening nine league matches.

He added: "We have played well in the last three league games and not got what we deserved, but by the same token there is also a time when you need to say if you are not going to get anything then be difficult to beat, like we were last year and not conceding goals.

"We have conceded too many late on and that needs to stop.

"We know that. You have to be physically and mentally switched on."

Norwich will be without Alex Tettey for a few weeks after the midfielder damaged knee ligaments. Scotland winger Robert Snodgrass is doubtful for Saturday after suffering concussion at Old Trafford.

Few give Norwich much hope of emulating their 3-2 victory at the Etihad Stadium on the final day of last season, when both teams had nothing left to play for.

Hughton, though, remains ever positive.

"We know our performances haven't been bad, but we haven't had the points to go with our performances and that is the reality," he said.

"Nobody will deny that this game is a tough ask, but you have got to go there and be delighted by the challenge - and you have got to be excited by it too."

View comments (1)