Norwich City’s Russell Martin thrilled by Scotland call-up
Norwich City defender Russell Martin's excellent form with the Canaries during their promotion-winning season has seen him rewarded with a call-up to the Scotland squad.
Brighton-born Martin, who qualifies to play for Scotland through his father, will join up with the squad as they prepare for the Carling Nations Cup later this month.
The 25-year-old flew back from Las Vegas to finalise the paperwork committing him to Craig Levein's side and he could make his debut against Wales on May 25 (kick-off 7.45pm) or the Republic of Ireland on May 29 (kick-off 6.30pm). Both games will be held at Dublin's Aviva Stadium.
Russell said that the call-up has rounded off a fantastic season.
'We have had a great season and it's been a great run for both the team and me personally and this has just topped it off with the call-up,' he told Sky Sports News.
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'My birth certificate is somewhere so I will have to look for that. My dad has sent his off so it is just a case of crossing the T's and dotting the I's.
'It's an amazing achievement and one that I am really proud of. Hopefully I can go up there, get some minutes on the pitch and do myself justice.'
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Levein has watched Martin on several occasions this season as the Canaries secured promotion to the Premier League with the former Peterborough man playing every minute of the club's 46-game campaign.
The Scotland boss is looking forward to taking a closer look at the full-back later this month – as long as the paperwork is completed in time.
'Russell has had a fantastic season at Norwich City, and congratulations to Paul and his backroom staff and players for getting promoted to the English Premier,' Levein said.
'Russell is one we have had our eye on for a while. He's in the squad but there are still elements of the paperwork to be finalised.
'If we can't get it done in time, so be it, but I'm confident. His father is Scottish so it shouldn't be too difficult.'
Norwich fans won't be surprised to see Martin's performances recognised at international level with the right-back establishing himself as one of the mainstays of Paul Lambert's first XI.
After signing from Peterborough following an initial loan spell in January 2010, he helped the club to promotion from League One but it was in the Championship that he really started to thrive with his forays down the right hand side adding a new dimension to City as an attacking force.
Martin revealed earlier this season that his resurgence was down to him overcoming ulcerative colitis – a form of inflammatory bowel disease that normally results in ulcers or open sores in the colon.
The illness was at its worst during Norwich's League One campaign but last summer afforded Martin the time he needed to get the disease under control and he has not looked back since.
His performances have seen him dubbed by Norwich supporters as 'The Norfolk Cafu' – in homage to the legendary Brazilian right-back and he was rewarded with a new contract in January that ties him to the club until 2014.
Martin's winner against QPR and last-minute equaliser against promotion rivals Cardiff City were crucial to the Canaries' promotion campaign while he was also on target in the 5-1 demolition of Ipswich Town at Portman Road.
Meanwhile, Canaries striker Simeon Jackson will also be in international action over the summer with Canada after being called up for their Gold Cup campaign, which starts against hosts, USA, on June 7 in Group C.