Martin Škrtel (Handlová, December 15, 1984) is a Slovakian footballer who plays centrally in the defence. He signed with Istanbul Başakşehir in September 2019, which signed him on a free transfer after surrendering his three-week-old contract with Atalanta Bergamo. Škrtel made his debut in 2004 in the Slovakia national football team.
At the end of 2007, after the won competition season in Russia, Škrtel signed a contract with Liverpool until June 2012. Here he competed with fellow defenders Jamie Carragher, Daniel Agger and Sami Hyypiä. On 21 January 2008, Škrtel made his Liverpool debut in the league game against Aston Villa (2–2 draw). After seventy minutes of playing time, he replaced Álvaro Arbeloa. For the rest of his first season in England, he was a fixture in the Liverpool team under coach Rafael Benítez. Škrtel played his first European game for Liverpool in the UEFA Cup on 11 March 2008, winning the round of 16 against Internazionale 0–1 with a goal from Fernando Torres, before qualifying for the quarter-finals. In April, Arsenal FC was defeated in a diptych (5–2), with another starting place for Škrtel. Chelsea were the second English opponent in the knockout stage of the UEFA Cup in the semi-final; the home game ended in a 1–1 draw on April 22, 2008, but lost 3–2 away in extra time a week later. Škrtel was injured after twenty minutes, after which Hyypiä replaced him. In the 2008/09 season, he was frequently absent from the Liverpool squad due to injuries. Škrtel injured his knee in the league game against Manchester City on October 5, 2008 and had to leave the field on a stretcher. He had to recover for months. Škrtel initially feared his career was over, but returned to the field on December 28 in the away game against Newcastle United (1–5 win), replacing Dirk Kuijt in the 79th minute. He played all games for the rest of the season - if fit enough: four times that was not the case - exclusively as a starting player, and reached second place in the Premier League with Liverpool. Offensively, Škrtel was important with assists in league games against champions Manchester United on March 14 (1–4 win) and against Hull City (1–3 win) on April 25, 2009.