Derby County sign Chris Martin from Norwich City

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Derby County have agreed a deal to sign striker Chris Martin from Premier League side Norwich City.

Martin becomes the Rams’ second permanent acquisition this week, after the Club confirmed the arrival of Burnley goalkeeper Lee Grant who, like Martin, is to officially join Derby from 1st July 2013.

He has agreed a two-year deal with the option of a further year.

Norwich decided against taking up the option of a further year on his contract, which has allowed Martin to join the Rams on a free transfer.

The 24-year-old frontman initially joined the Rams on a one-month loan deal in February, making his debut as a second half substitute in the side’s narrow 2-1 defeat to Watford at Vicarage Road.

Martin went on to make 13 League appearances for the Rams, scoring two goals, and his performances impressed Rams boss Nigel Clough, who has revealed his delight at securing the forward’s services on a permanent basis.

Clough said: “Chris did really well whilst here on loan so we’re pleased to get him signed up, and it’s another important signing for us.

“He’s a striker with different qualities to what we’ve already got, especially with his physical presence and ability to hold the ball up.

“We’ve admired him from afar for some time and monitored his progress closely, and once we got him in the building we knew he would fit in just fine with how we want to play and this group of lads.

“We can’t wait to see him in action come the start August with a full pre-season behind him.”

The Canaries Academy graduate had found it difficult to secure a regular first-team place with Norwich this term in the Premier League, and had been limited to three appearances under Chris Hughton.

Since making his City debut as a substitute against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Carrow Road in January 2007 Martin went on to make 117 appearances for the Canaries, scoring 34 goals in the process.

23 of his goals came in their 2009-10 League 1 title-winning campaign, whilst in 2010-11 he scored for the Canaries in their 2-1 win at Pride Park Stadium against Derby.

He also had a loan stint Luton Town in 2008, where he played a key role in their Johnstone’s Paint Trophy victory at Wembley, scoring in a 3-2 extra-time victory over Scunthorpe United.

The Beccles-born striker spent last season on loan at fellow Championship side Crystal Palace. He netted seven goals during his spell with the Eagles, two of which came against the Rams, while he also spent time on loan at Swindon Town in League 1 under Paolo Di Canio earlier this season.