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Currently on loan at Fulham, striker Chris Martin will become a free agent at the end of this season when his contract expires at Derby County.
It’s taken a while for the talented forward to reach the levels he is capable of. Martin had spells in the lowers leagues with Luton and Norwich, though his climb came with the Carrow Road club being promoted to the Championship in 2010.
Back then he didn’t really flourish at this level and was loaned to Crystal Palace and then Swindon, before he found his footing at Derby County. 52 goals followed for the East Midlanders before finding himself out of favour once more, leading to his current loan spell at Craven Cottage.
With a new manager in Gary Rowett on the scene, it is possible that Martin might be wanted at Pride Park, though it is more likely that he’ll be seeking a new challenge. Plenty would benefit from the 28-year-old’s talents; he’s now passed double figures for goals for the fourth time, with his best being a 22-goal haul for Derby in 2013/14.
Wolves need a proper no.9 as Andreas Weimann is just not cutting the mustard in that position and other players who would perhaps be more comfortable in deeper or wider areas filling in that position. This is where Martin comes in.
Martin is what fans call a ‘proper centre-forward’. 6 feet tall and having no issues with the hustle and bustle of competitive league football; his main attributes go beyond finishing. Martin is the type of player who brings other people into play. Occupying the centre-backs for a full 90 minutes is a big part of Martin’s game and without that, other players often cannot find space.
Imagine the £3.83m rated striker up front for Wolves; winning headers, throwing in the odd arm when needed and generally taking care of central defenders. This would allow the likes of Weimann and Helder Costa to thrive by running into space and providing the goals.
It must also be remembered that Chris Martin is capable of 20+ goals if the need arises to throw him up front with two old fashioned wingers in the side providing crosses. However, in a modern 4-2-3-1 system, his job will be to provide a buffer for the other attackers in the side.
Should Wolves sign the Scotland international, they must remember that getting 10 or more goals out of him will be enough. His true worth can be measured by how well Marshall, Costa, Cavaleiro and Dicko play around him.