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Martin salutes loan stars

Chris Martin believes Derby County have benefited greatly from loan deals this season, with George Thorne a 'quality' addition.

Thorne, drafted in from West Bromwich Albion in January, initially had to be patient before being unleashed on Sky Bet Championship opposition.

He had to wait until March before making his bow - in a 5-0 demolition of arch-rivals Nottingham Forest - but has now started eight games in succession.

Top goalscorer Martin feels the midfielder has added something different to Derby, with the club pushing hard to secure a return to the Premier League via the play-offs.

He told the Derby Telegraph: "George has been quality since he was brought in.

"Eusty did very well in that holding role before he got suspended after taking a few bookings for the team. And George has stepped in and been magnificent.

"He is very good on the ball and does his work defensively. He has a bit of bite in the tackle and can pass the ball.

"He has got everything. He is a Premier League quality player and we're lucky to have him."

Derby have also benefited considerably from the skill sets Patrick Bamford and Andre Wisdom have brought with them from Chelsea and Liverpool respectively.

Martin added on Thorne and his fellow loan stars: "I think the manager and staff have done well to get him in - along with Patrick and Andre.

"We've been very good in the loan market this season and I think George has added an extra dimension to us.

"We were very good before he came into the team but he has been a continuation of what we've been doing.

"He's very good on the ball. He's relaxed and has a calmness about him, which we need sometimes."