Martin Smith (Part 1)

In a special edition of the Memory Lane series, Charles talks to former Cobblers forward, Martin Smith.

Martin Smith started his career at his boyhood team Sunderland where he was involved in two Division One title winning teams which won promotion to the Premier League.

During his time with the Black Cats, Smith made his only appearance in an England shirt for the Under-21’s in a 1-0 win over the Republic of Ireland. Smith was a 68 minute substitute, coming on for Chris Bart-Williams to play alongside the likes of Sol Campbell, Nicky Butt and Julian Joachim.

Smith was dubbed ‘The Son of Pele’ by Sunderland fanzine A Love Supreme but after 119 appearances and 25 goals for the Black Cats, he moved on and signed for Sheffield United at the start of the 1999/2000 season.

A year later and Smith was on the move again. This time to Huddersfield Town where he scored 17 goals during the Terriers’ relegation season of 2002/03.

It was at the end of that season that Martin Wilkinson finally got his man having flown out to Marbella where Smith was holidaying. ‘Smudger’ signed for Northampton Town and the football genius and spent three seasons chasing promotion at Sixfields.

In this first part hear Smudger’s thoughts on the two Cobblers managers he played for – Martin Wilkinson and Colin Calderwood. How playing for the Cobblers differed to his previous clubs and his memories of that first game in a claret and white shirt on a red hot August day against Torquay.


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