CHRIS HAS AN­OTHER REA­SON TO CEL­E­BRATE

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Mar­ios Pa­paloizou

DERBY’S Chris Martin has had dou­ble cause for cel­e­bra­tion this week af­ter fir­ing Derby into the Cham­pi­onship play-off fi­nal and earn­ing his first Scot­land call-up.

But the 25-year-old in­sists the Tar­tan Army will con­tinue to play sec­ond fid­dle be­fore the Rams take to Wem­b­ley against QPR this Satur­day.

In-form Martin scored in last the 4-1 rout of Brighton as Derby made light work of the Seag­ulls to win 6-2 on ag­gre­gate. The 25-goal striker is now in line to make his Scot­land deb -ut ag-ainst Nigeria at Craven Cot­tage on May 28.

But Martin says he has un­fin­ished busi­ness with his club be­fore tak­ing to the in­ter­na­tional stage.

“I spoke to Scot­land man­ager Gor­don Strachan a few times ear­lier this year and I’m glad he has seen enough in me to give me this op­por­tu­nity,” said Martin, who qual­i­fies through his dad.

“I’m re­ally relishing be­ing in the squad, but there is a mas­sive game for Derby first but this callup is bril­liant news.

“It is an hon­our for me al­though it has been a lit­tle while to get to this stage. There was talk of me be­ing in the last squad but clear­ance didn’t come from FIFA in time.”

Martin isn’t the only Ram in Gor­don Strachan’s squad, with two-cap Craig Bryson join­ing an­other debu­tant Craig Forsyth.

“It is nice to get the recog­ni­tion on an in­di­vid­ual ba­sis but it’s also nice as a team with three play­ers in the squad,” added Martin.

“It has been a re­ally mem­o­rable sea­son and I’ve re­ally en­joyed it. Hope­fully, there are one or two more high mo­ments to come.”

There will be few higher than the Pride Park ham­mer­ing Martin and co dished out to Brighton.

The hosts, who led 2-1 af­ter the first leg, ex­tended their lead when Will Hughes bril­liantly flicked in Jamie Ward’s cross.

Martin bun­dled the ball over the line af­ter Jamie Ward’s knock-down and Ge­orge Thorne volleyed in a spec­tac­u­lar third.

Jeff Hen­drick made it 4-0 af­ter Patrick Bam­ford’ss pull­back, be­fore Kazenga Lua Lua's con­so­la­tion from 18 yards.

Brighton boss Os­car Gar­cia, who had his of­fer to re­sign ac­cepted by the club, said:“The club has been aware of my thoughts for sev­eral weeks.

“Dur­ing this time, I have had dis­cus­sions with the chair­man, Tony Bloom, and chief ex­ec­u­tive, Paul Bar­ber. I have en­joyed my time with the club but, I have de­cided to move on.”

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