Connor is worth his weight in goals
WHAT price for Connor Wickham now?
Ipswich Town’s highly-prized teenage centre-forward, who has already been the subject of a reported �5m bid from Tottenham this summer, has probably increased his value still further with a two-goal blast at international level yesterday.
Wickham plundered a first-half brace to send England Under-17s through to the final of the UEFA European Under-17 Championships, during the 2-1 win over France in yesterday’s semi-final in Liechtenstein.
Centre-forward Wickham, who was only eligible to sign his first professional contract at the end of March, following his 17th birthday, was the star turn for England with two precision finishes.
And that has to be good news for Town. Already under the spotlight, with a host of top-flight clubs tracking his progress, Wickham is one of the hottest properties in the Championship. He signed a two-year deal with Town.
Manager Roy Keane wants Wickham to lead Town’s front-line next season, and it will take a bid of massive proportions to prise the Town Academy product away from Suffolk.
Wickham broke the deadlock after 23 minutes against the French. Fellow front-runner Benik Afobe held the ball up for Wickham to steer past keeper Alphonse Areola with a left-footed angled drive.
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And England were well and truly in the driving seat when Wickham doubled his tally just before half-time. It was another cool finish, from Conor Coady’s lay-off.
France rallied in the second half and pulled a goal back through Paul Pogba, but England held on to book their place in Sunday’s final.
Wickham has already plundered seven goals in 11 appearances for England Under-17s, and he will be looking to add to his tally in the final to secure his country’s first European Under-17 Championship title.
He will then be due a deserved rest, before pre-season starts at Ipswich on June 28, especially as he was a regular in Town’s starting line-up during the closing weeks of last season with three goals during April alone.