Wickham salutes former Liverpool star

CONNOR Wickham has revealed that his footballing hero is Chelsea’s Fernando Torres, and the Ipswich Town player is adamant that the Spaniard will soon start hitting the goal trail again.

It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that the 17-year-old will take over Torres’ old Liverpool number nine shirt one day.

Wickham lines up for Town in their npower Championship match against Cardiff City at Cardiff City Stadium today (kick-off 5.20pm) in a match that is being shown live on Sky Sports TV.

It will give the England Under-21 international a chance to parade his talents to a national audience with Liverpool one of the top clubs taking more than a passing interest in him.

He has confirmed that he is happy to see out his contact with Ipswich that ends in the summer of 2013 and that he would prefer reaching his goal of playing in the Premier League with the Blues.

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But if he carries on with the progress he has made he will certainly grace the top flight and most probably international football before he is much older.

And he sees Torres as his inspiration.

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“People maybe slating Torres a little bit at the moment,” said Wickham.

“And he has not been at his best since he joined Chelsea, but on his day he is the best striker in the world.

“I’ve been through times when the goals don’t come, but once you get one others often follow and Torres will work hard I’m sure to get back on the goal trail.”

Since Paul Jewell took over as Town manager, Wickham has been playing wide on the opposite side of the field to Lee Martin with either Jason Scotland or Tamas Priskin up front on their own.

“I can do that job, and I think I’m doing well and scoring goals,” added Wickham, who says that he has plenty more in the tank.

“It gives me a chance to show everybody what I can do and what I am capable of.”

When asked exactly what he is capable of and how much he can achieve in the game, he replied: “I have aspects of my game that I am still working on.

“My heading is one of the areas where I am looking to improve and this is where extra hours training come in.

“This is what you have to do if you want to play on, and to become consistent.

“You have to learn all the while and if you make mistakes make sure that you do not repeat them.

“Players like Mark Kennedy and the midfielders are always encouraging me and have helped my game and I’m doing all I can to improve.”

Wickham says that he is fully fit now after an injury-hit first half of the season and added: “I’m feeling on top of my game and ready to play 90 minutes for the rest of the season.

“We have a buzz in the dressing room now and can hopefully get back on track today after three games without a win.”

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