McManaman, 21, made all the headlines in the build-up to the game as the fall-out from his knee-high tackle on Newcastle's Massadio Haidara two weeks ago rolls on, but it was Kone who stole the show at the DW Stadium on Saturday with his sixth goal in as many games earning a priceless 1-0 victory over Norwich.
Martinez said: "Any striker that comes to the Barclays Premier League always takes a bit of time to settle in but Arouna Kone never had that period. From the first day that he arrived, he came on as a sub against Chelsea, he made a contribution. And his form was very good."
He added: "He went away for the African Nations Cup and that was a real blow for us.
"Since he arrived I think we've seen a player that is desperate to help the team, to show what he can do, and the amount of goals he has and the manner he's getting those goals is quite impressive.
"You've got a striker who's played in Spain, Holland, Germany and now the British league. He's at the best moment of his career.
"The goals that he scored with Levante last season and what he's doing with us now show he's a man that's ready to pass influence to our youngsters. And I hope that Callum McManaman and the youngsters at the club can learn a lot from Arouna."
- Sports & Recreation
- Arouna Kone
- Barclays Premier League