Russell Martin impressed by Walsall's togetherness

Russell Martin says he's been impressed by the togetherness and team spirit at Walsall.

Russell Martin
Russell Martin

The 32-year-old joined the Saddlers earlier this month as a player-coach following nine successful years at Norwich.

Now though Martin is enjoying life at his new club – with the defender impressed by the camaraderie in the group.

"The togetherness here is brilliant," the former Scotland international said.

"When you play at the top level, it becomes a little bit less about that.

"Everyone has got their own thing and it becomes about earning good money.

"You still try to cultivate that togetherness and get that but it becomes a bit more individual. People are a bit more focused on doing well for themselves.

"But here they know collective success brings individual plaudits or moves. If you are a good player in a good team, you are more likely to play at a higher level. They get that.

"I have been really impressed with the togetherness, the spirit and the energy they have got.

"They bounce off each other and it’s great, it’s good to be a part of. I have been quite quiet so far but I’m looking forward to being part of it."

Martin has enjoyed a glittering playing career that has seen him twice win promotion into the Premier League.

But he started out at non-league Lewes in East Sussex.

And he believes he will be able to help Morgan Ferrier, Andy Cook and Josh Ginnelly who all joined the Saddlers after playing in the National League last year.

"It's interesting because a lot of players, like Morgan for example, dip out of the professional game and have to go into non-league to bounce back again," Martin continued.

"I am not someone who has just played at the top level and not experienced that.

"I have played in this league twice, I have played in League Two for four or five seasons.

"I did it the hard way if you like, I didn't go straight from an academy into playing for the first-team.

"Hopefully I can pass on a bit of that experience because it doesn't just happen over night for some players.

"Some players develop physically. But a lot of the time it's the mental side of it where they improve and build a bit more resilience.

"I've got the experience to fall back on so hopefully I can help them with that."

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