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Derby County 5-1 Blackpool: Steve McClaren Hails Hat-Trick Hero Chris Martin

Derby County head coach Steve McClaren labelled striker Chris Martin as “focal” to the way his side play after the Rams recorded their fifth straight Championship win over nine-man Blackpool.

Former Norwich frontman Martin hit a hat-trick – two coming from the penalty spot – to lift the Rams up to fourth. McClaren said:

“I’m pleased for Chris – he admitted he wasn’t at his best on Wednesday [in the win over Middlesbrough]. He’s become the focal point to our attack and our team.

“He allows the players around to come in because he can hold the ball up, has great awareness and a great touch. The key thing is he scores and makes assists. If he didn’t do that then he wouldn’t be in the team.”

McClaren also credited the entire County squad for their sensational recent form which has seen them turn around what was becoming a disappointing season under previous manager Nigel Clough.

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