Derby County striker Chris Martin joins Reading on loan

Derby County striker Chris Martin joins Reading on loan

The 29-year-old striker has joined the Royals on loan until the end of the season.

Sam Straw

Reading have completed the signing of Derby County striker Chris Martin on loan until the end of the season. 

The 29-year-old has become Jaap Stam's second addition of the January transfer window as he looks to bolster his attacking options. He will be hoping that Martin can score the goals to fire the Royals away from the Championship relegation zone in the coming weeks.

The Royals are currently sat just six points off the relegation zone, despite their vital 3-1 victory over fellow strugglers Burton Albion at the Pirelli Stadium on Tuesday evening. 

Down the pecking order at Pride Park

It has been an interesting couple of years for Martin in which he has never quite been able to properly settle and focus on his football. He was loaned out to Championship rivals Fulham last season by Nigel Pearson and he was a success at Craven Cottage. He managed to find the back of the net 10 times in the 30 league appearances he made during his time at the club.

However, his spell with the Whites did end controversially as Steve McClaren returned to Derby following Pearson's dismissal, resulting in Martin wanting to return to his parent club. The striker did eventually return to Pride Park but has found himself out of favour once again under the management of Gary Rowett this season. 

The Rams have an abundance of attacking talent within their squad including the likes of Matej Vydra, David Nugent and Sam Winnall. Rowett also secured the services of Norwich City striker Cameron Jerome for a fee of around £1.5 million recently which meant that Martin's opportunities were going to be even more limited. 

Rowett took his squad to a warm-weather training camp in the Middle East last week, which is a trip that Martin was a part of. However, at this time it was widely reported that he was most likely going to depart to Sunderland on loan until the end of the season. 

However, this move did not materialise in the end of Reading have been able to take advantage. It will be interesting to see how he performs at the Madejski Stadium and whether it is a move that could potentially become a permanent one in the summer.

Stam delighted with new arrival 

Stam is a manager who has found himself under significant pressure at times so far this season and he will be delighted that he has been able to acquire the services of an experienced striker at this level. Martin is a striker who is likely to slot straight into Reading's starting line-up and should take no time to settle in. 

Stam says it was important for the Royals to strengthen their attacking options this month. He said: "With the large number of games still to play this season, it was important to strengthen the attacking options available to us with a player who can add to what we already have within the squad."

He added: "In Chris Martin, we have a striker who has proven his goalscoring ability at the clubs he has played for in the past and hopefully he can give us an extra impetus going forward and score goals for us.”

Martin could make his debut for the Royals on Saturday afternoon as they welcome Millwall to the Madejski Stadium.