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Suspended Derby County striker Chris Martin targets run-in retribution

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: March 15, 2014

NO WAY . . . Chris Martin shows his disbelief after the Derby County striker is sent off at Burnley

NO WAY . . . Chris Martin shows his disbelief after the Derby County striker is sent off at Burnley

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TOP scorer Chris Martin will use the “injustice” of his red card against Burnley as motivation in Derby County’s promotion run-in.

Martin received a second yellow card and was dismissed shortly before half time at Turf Moor earlier this month, after referee Robert Madley judged the player had dived in the area.

Replays showed it was not a dive and Martin says the official made a mistake.

“I think he would probably be the first to admit it, if he was able to talk about it –which doesn’t really happen in today’s game,” said Martin ahead of Derby’s Championship clash at Reading today.

“What I will say is I don’t think I have ever dived in my career.

“It was frustrating. You could tell that from my reaction. I was astonished the referee came to that decision.

“Even some of Burnley’s players were surprised.

“At the time I was speaking to a couple of them and they said they didn’t think it was a second yellow card for simulation.

“It was a strange decision. I think the referee rushed it a little bit, but these things happen. I have made mistakes and obviously referees make mistakes.

“It was a shame because I have to miss the Millwall game, but I have tried not to dwell on it and use it as motivation for the upcoming games.”

Martin says it would be wrong and unfair if he is now labelled with the tag of a player who dives.

He said: “There are times when I have gone down easily to win a free kick but only after contact, after a foul. I think a lot of players do that.

“It is seen as being cute, a little bit clever to try and buy a bit of time for your team.

“Inviting fouls can help your team get up the pitch.

“But there is a hell of a big difference between doing that and diving.”

Martin has scored 18 times this season, but the goals have dried up for Derby in recent weeks.

They have hit only three in the last six games but Martin says there is no need to panic.

“We have still got the quality in the team to score goals,” he added.

“We are as disappointed as anybody that we have not scored in the last three games and I think one goal, early in a game, can spark us again.

“If you can get an early goal it brings the opposition out a little bit and that is where we know our quality can shine through. We can pick them off if they do venture forward.

“Teams know how dangerous we can be when given time and space.”

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