Fulham and Derby County are unarguably two of the Championship sides who still have an outside chance of making it into the play-off spots in the coming months. With the former merely a couple of points behind Sheffield Wednesday who are slotted at the last play-off spot and the latter being five points adrift, the scenario is heating up.
However, there has been an awkward situation that is getting inked between these two outfits regarding the dilemma with respect to striker Chris Martin which has cultivated deep interest from far and wide. The curious case of Martin is high on agenda amongst the football fraternity and it was elevated a few steps higher when he scored a vital goal on Sunday against Hull City in the fourth round of the Emirates FA Cup. But, what is this diabolical situation all about?
For the starters, Martin is currently plying his trade at Fulham after being sent on loan to the Craven Cottage from Derby County until the end of the season. Just prior to their stupendous win against the Tigers in the FA Cup, the 28-year-old signed a new contract with the Rams which runs until the summer of 2020. He has been in blistering form for Fulham as he’s managed 9 goals in 18 appearances and has also registered 2 assists. Further, he has also created 22 chances and has unarguably been a star performer.
However, Martin wants to terminate his loan deal and return to the Pride Park Stadium and has taken some of the drastic steps to see his demands being met, including his refusal to play against Reading in December. He was loaned by Derby County under the tutelage of Nigel Pearson but now that the side have a new manager in the shape of Steve McLaren, the striker was given a new contract.
The Scottish international has made a total of 160 appearances for his parent club, finding the back of the net on 63 occasions. It was surprising to see Martin’s name in Slavisa Jokanovic’s starting line-up on Saturday, and boos from the crowd to represent their disgust towards Martin didn’t take very long time to come. He was, however, given a standing ovation owing to the way he constantly bullied Hull City’s defenders and scored one himself to restore the lead.
Nonetheless, the London-based outfit would not want to lose a front man who is exceptionally good at holding up the play up front, phenomenon work-rate and impeccable movements which make him an irresistible commodity. Derby County do want their man back but then, there is a contractual point to be met as well which is needed to be addressed by a discussion between these two clubs before the curtains fall.
Statistics Credits: Squawka
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