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Rangers look to be a good fit for out-of-favour Canaries defender Martin

Club captain Russell Martin watches City beat Millwall from the Soutyh Stand gantry at Carrow Road. Pictures: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

Club captain Russell Martin watches City beat Millwall from the Soutyh Stand gantry at Carrow Road. Pictures: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

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As speculation about the future of Canaries veteran Russell Martin persists, David Freezer assesses the likelihood of a January exit for the defender.

Better times - Martin lifts the Championship play-off tropy at Wembley in May 2015. Better times - Martin lifts the Championship play-off tropy at Wembley in May 2015.

Russell Martin used to be in the thick of the action at Norwich City but now the club captain watches on from the shadows, as talk of the long-serving defender’s exit continues.

Reports linking the Scotland international with Rangers emerged last week, suggesting he was heading to Glasgow on loan for the remainder of the season.

Canaries head coach Daniel Farke was asked about the link ahead of Saturday’s trip to Burton Albion and calmed talk of an imminent exit.

“All I can say about Russ is I’m full of respect for his career and his attitude,” the German said.

Martin celebrates Premier League victory over Manchester United at Old Trafford in December 2015. Martin celebrates Premier League victory over Manchester United at Old Trafford in December 2015.

“He is our club captain and I’m happy to have him in this group, not at all would I say we don’t need him.”

MORE: Farke calms talk of Rangers loan move for captain Martin

With the 31-year-old seemingly the only experienced cover for Ivo Pinto at right-back, it was a point most supporters could see sense in. However, six changes due to the prospect of two games in three days still didn’t bring Martin back into the City squad, even with Pinto nursing a hamstring issue during December.

The man who led City out at Wembley in 2015 ahead of play-off final glory under Alex Neil was then so far out of contention for the 2-1 defeat of Millwall at Carrow Road that he was able to watch the game from high up in an empty television studio, on the South Stand gantry.

With a report in The Times subsequently stating Martin ‘has been told he will not play for Norwich under head coach Daniel Farke’ an exit is looking ever more probable during January.

With key defender Bruno Alves leaving Rangers’ 0-0 draw at bitter rivals Celtic on crutches after injuring his ankle and calf, a Gers loan looks a good fit.

Norwich City transfer rumours: Russell Martin set to join Rangers on loan

Play in front of around 50,000 at Ibrox or persevere with under-23s football in Norfolk? Not a hard decision is it.

The former Peterborough and Wycombe defender – who turns 32 on Thursday – was dropped after a disastrous 4-0 loss at Millwall at the end of August and has featured as an unused substitute during just three games since.

To see a loyal servant, a veteran of the Paul Lambert era of success who sits 22nd in the club’s all-time list with 309 appearances, frozen out is verging on an indignity.

His character has never been in question but should a loan move materialise, many will ask why his contract was extended until 2019 last summer, as well as wish the Scotland international well.

• Follow Canaries correspondent David Freezer on Facebook @DavidFreezer1 or on Twitter @davefreezer

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