Naismith would have been ‘immense’ for Norwich City says Russell Martin

Scotland's Russell Martin during a training session with Steven Naismith. Photo: PA

Scotland's Russell Martin during a training session with Steven Naismith. Photo: PA - Credit: PA

Russell Martin has revealed the part he and Steven Whittaker played as City attempted to pull off a transfer deadline day coup.

City reportedly put in a bid of £8m for striker Steven Naismith, only for Everton to put up the 'not for sale' sign.

Martin has seen again this week just what manager Alex Neil would have got for his money as the City pair linked up with Naismith on Scotland international duty.

Both Martin and Whittaker pair gave Naismith a glowing reference as Neil tried to add to his attacking options.

'I'm disappointed we couldn't get him in the end because he'd have been a fantastic signing,' said Martin.

'Steven and I were asked recently what we thought about him and we both sang his praises.

'He would have been an immense signing for us, but it's not happened and I'm sure he'll do a great job when he goes back to Everton.

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'I'd rather play with him than against him, that's for sure.

'But when business is left that late on deadline day it is tough to get it done.

'But Everton wanted to keep him and there's no surprise there.

'I'm sure our club will be disappointed. I know as players we were disappointed and I'm sure the manager will feel the same.'

Martin and Whittaker are expected to feature in Scotland's European Championship qualifying group D against Georgia in Tbilisi tonight (kick-off 5pm).