Keane may turn to Connor for goals

CONNOR Wickham, Ipswich Town's much-talked about 16-year-old sensation, should feature against Sheffield Wednesday this afternoon (kick-off 5.20pm).

Carl Marston

CONNOR Wickham, Ipswich Town's much-talked about 16-year-old sensation, should feature against Sheffield Wednesday this afternoon (kick-off 5.20pm).

Manager Roy Keane looks set to include Wickham in his 18-man squad, as he strives to unearth a goal-scoring machine from within his ranks.

Keane has been frustrated by his strikers' lack of goals this term. Town have mustered just 17 goals in 16 league games, with the four senior front-men contributing a miserly total of just eight goals.


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Jon Walters (four goals), Jon Stead (two), Tamas Priskin (one) and Pablo Counago (one) have not exactly set the Championship alight this term.

Keane started with Priskin and Stead up front in Town's last match against Reading (1-1 draw), and he could do the same again.

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However, he has hinted that he might change his strike-force formation again today. Wickham will be in contention, either from the start or from the bench.

“I don't think that any of my strikers have got a grasp of it yet. No one has cemented that No. 1 striker position,” insisted Keane.

“I've been trying different combinations, and might try a different combination again this weekend.

“(Connor) Wickham comes back into contention and Pablo (Counago) played for the reserves in midweek.

“Nearly all the players are getting an opportunity, and I've been known to change my team!

“I want someone to say that I'm the No. 1 striker, not just because of work-rate, but because they are putting the ball in the back of the net. That can change the whole outlook of your team,” added Keane.

Wickham has been impressing for England Under-17s, while also attracting interest from all the top clubs in the Premier League.

No doubt the travelling scouts will be sitting up straight if Wickham plays today.

“Connor Wickham has big potential, but then that's just like I have the potential to be a top manager,” continued Keane.

“He's only 16 and he's still learning his trade. I've seen lots of lads that age go to the very top, but others don't for various reasons. Sixteen, it's scary!

“I think Ipswich Town is to best place for him to get his football education. At least he has a good chance to get some first team games at a Championship club. Often you can get lost at one of the bigger clubs.

“I think we're a good club for him, but we can't stop speculation. The likes of Chelsea and Liverpool are more than capable of buying players from other clubs,” concluded Keane.

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