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Derby County: Chris Martin out to do it all again

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: August 08, 2014

By Steve Nicholson

FAMILIAR SIGHT ... striker Chris Martin celebrates another goal for Derby County.

FAMILIAR SIGHT ... striker Chris Martin celebrates another goal for Derby County.

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CHRIS Martin is determined to prove that his 25-goal haul last season was no fluke.

Martin was the Rams' top scorer in his first full campaign with the club.

He also became the first Derby player since Dean Sturridge in 1995-96 to pass the 20-goal mark in a season.

The striker is now looking to match that feat in 2014-15 – or even better it.

Martin has already netted a pre-season hat-trick, at Notts County, and his double gave the Rams a 2-0 victory over Rangers in their final friendly last weekend.

"As a striker, putting the ball in the back of the net always breeds confidence, no matter what kind of game it is," said the 25-year-old front man.

"It's good for confidence and a good habit to get into.

"Hopefully, it follows a similar pattern throughout the season.

"I'm feeling confident. I think you've seen from the way the team plays that I'm going to get a hatful of chances again.

"It's just about me staying focused, doing things right and finishing the chances off.

"I don't see any reason why I can't do that, to be perfectly honest.

"I'll be working just as hard, if not harder, to make sure last season wasn't a fluke and to make sure I can do that again for one, two, three, four, five seasons to come.

"It's a good challenge for me and I enjoy the responsibility."

Martin's goals helped Derby finish third in the Championship table but Steve McClaren's men were cruelly denied promotion by a 1-0 play-off final defeat to Queens Park Rangers at Wembley.

The Scotland international is hoping they can challenge once again – but is not expecting it to be straightforward.

"It's not just going to all fall into place," he said.

"Obviously, the expectation is going to be higher and some people might expect us to steamroller teams.

"But that's not going to be the case – we need to work just as hard as we did last season.I don't think we're under any illusions – we know what it takes and we talk about it every single week.

"Monday to Friday is when the hard work is put in and it makes the Saturdays and the Tuesdays that bit easier if you're willing to do that.

"That's what we'll be trying to do and if we can keep up those standards, hopefully, the results will be pretty similar."

Martin said: "We need to forget about last season now. It was a great season until the end of the very last game.

"But this is a new season and a new challenge.

"We've set our goals as a team and individually and we want to achieve them.

"If we show the same spirit and togetherness we did last season, I think we'll be fine."

Derby open their new campaign at home to newly-promoted Rotherham United tomorrow (3pm).

"I think all the promoted teams will be on a high going into the new season," said Martin.

"I was lucky enough to experience it myself with Norwich and there have been several teams that have gone on to gain double promotions.

"There's no reason they can't do well and we won't be looking at them as an inferior team just because they were in League One last year.

"They've signed a lot of players and have had good backing from the people upstairs, I believe.

"They've got a good squad and it will be a tough challenge for us.

"But we'll be prepared, make sure we know what they're about – and also try to impress our game on them.

"If we show the right attitude, I think we've got a really good chance."

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