Martin relishing Bale battle

Scotland international Martin, 25, 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 on Tuesday night, the likelihood is Martin will be asked to

move out to the right side of defence. The former Wycombe defender,

capped against Wales at the end of last season, is ready for

whatever challenge high-flying Spurs conjure up on Tuesday. “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 – but it is going to be

hard for anyone to stop Bale, because he is on fire, just like the

whole Spurs team,” Martin told Canaries Player. “You can’t just

concentrate on one person, because they have got players all over

the pitch who can change games in an instant. “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.” Martin added:

“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. “Hopefully our fans

will enjoy another top team coming down and we can give them a good

game. “We never go to play safe for a draw, we will try to attack

them, create some chances and see where it takes us.” With a hectic

festive fixture list, the traditional holiday visit from family

will be most welcome in the Martin household. “I am sure I will get

plenty of sleep before the games,” the defender said. Martin joined

up with his former Wycombe boss Paul Lambert again at Norwich in

November 2009, and became an integral part of the squad which won

successive promotions up to the top flight. The Canaries have

acquitted themselves well on their return to the top flight, and

are the highest-placed of all three promoted clubs. Martin admits

it has been a “magic” couple of seasons at Carrow Road, but knows

there is plenty of hard work ahead over the next five months if

Norwich are to retain their status among the elite sides of English

football. “You can see how far we have come as players, as a team

and as a club,” Martin said. “It has been a magic two years – to

see us ninth in the Premier League at Christmas, no-one would have

expected it. “However, it is so tight down there that it can change

quickly, so we need to keep going. “We have not got time to rest on

our laurels or get complacent because this league is ruthless.”

Norwich have yet to keep a clean sheet in any of their 17 Barclays

Premier League games, and it is understood defensive reinforcements

are on Paul Lambert’s wanted list. “I have told the club the

players I would like to try and get in,” Lambert told BBC Radio

Norfolk. “We have to box clever with what we are trying to do. It

is up to the club to try and sort something out.”