Martin wide awake to danger of Spurs' marauding Bale
Tuesday 27 December 2011
Russell Martin may be a new father but if he is losing sleep it is not at the prospect of shackling the "on fire" Tottenham winger Gareth Bale at Carrow Road tonight.
Martin has produced a string of consistent displays in the Norwich defence – including in the 4-2 win over Newcastle earlier this month when his partner Jasmine had gone into labour ahead of the birth of their first child, Reno.
With Kyle Naughton, on loan from Spurs, set to serve a one-match ban tonight, the likelihood is that Martin will be asked to move out to the right side of defence. "If I get put out there at right-back for one game, it is no problem as I have played there for a lot of my career," said the 25-year-old Scotland international. "But it is going to be hard for anyone to stop Bale, because he is on fire, just like the whole Spurs team."
"Spurs are flying and have overtaken Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool, they look like they will be challenging for the title this season, so it does not get any easier.
"We know how tough it is going to be, but we have worked hard to get here and we have not been overawed so far, I am sure that will continue."
It will need to continue – while they are the highest of the three promoted teams, Norwich have yet to keep a clean sheet in any of their 17 Premier League games, and it is understood defensive reinforcements are on manager Paul Lambert's wanted list.
"I have told the club the players I would like to try and get in," Lambert said. "We have to box clever with what we are trying to do. It is up to the club to try and sort something out."
Odds Home 7-2; Draw 13-5, Away 4-5.
Kick-off Tonight, 7.30pm (Sky Sports 1; Highlights Sky Sports 1, 10pm)
Team news Kyle Naughton misses out for Norwich against his parent club, but would have been suspended anyway, after picking up a fifth booking. Spurs could have Rafael Van der Vaart fit, but have worries over Younes Kaboul (hamstring) while Jermain Defoe (hamstring) is out.
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