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Martinez salutes SSN milestone

We're celebrating 15 years of Sky Sports News this week - and Everton boss Roberto Martinez has joined in the celebrations.

Last Updated: 29/10/13 at 11:08 Post Comment

Roberto Martinez: Celebrating Sky Sports News' journey - and his own in Engl

Roberto Martinez: Celebrating Sky Sports News' journey - and his own in Engl

Since its launch in 1998 as the UK's first rolling sports news channel, Sky Sports News has provided viewers with breaking news, action and reaction from the biggest stories around the globe.

The Spaniard's career - from the brink of relegation from the Football League as a player with Swansea, to FA Cup success as a manager with Wigan and a subsequent move to Goodison Park - is one we've followed closely.

We recruited him as one of our La Liga experts shortly after he arrived at Wigan in 1995 - one of the club's 'Three Amigos' alongside Jesús Seba and Isidro Díaz - and he took the opportunity to pay tribute to the "game-changing" coverage he has played a part in over the last decade and a half.

"It was really satisfying for me to help bring a bit of La Liga to the British audience," Martinez told Sky Sports News. "I really enjoyed how professional the Sky Sports coverage was. There was a real respect for Spanish football

"But all the football coverage on Sky Sports News has been really special. The big stories for me have been about the English players going abroad to represent big teams - David Beckham, Michael Owen - and seeing how they've adapted to a new culture.

"But you can't not mention the transfer speculation, which has helped the channel build up such a big following! The breaking news ticker is such a powerful tool - you know it's going to have a big effect on the fans.

"What's happened over the last 15 years has really helped the understanding of the game and the following of the game, as well as raising the funds to help make football what it is today."

Martinez started his managerial career at Swansea, leading them to the Championship in 2008, before returning to the Latics, where he had spent six years as a player.

"It was a culture shock at first when I joined Wigan; it was difficult to speak English, there were lots of different situations. But it's been a fascinating journey," he added.

"Winning the FA (in 2012) meant so much - it will never be forgotten - but Wigan staying eight years in the Premier League was an incredible achievement. Survival was like winning the title.

"At Swansea, it went down to the final game of the season in 2003 (against Hull) as to whether we would survive. But (then-manager) Bryan Flynn wanted to play football to get out of trouble and Swansea reacted to that. They're a great example of how a football club should be run, how a club should have a clear philosophy."

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