Wickham targeted by Northern Ireland

CONNOR Wickham is being chased by Northern Ireland!

CONNOR Wickham is being chased by Northern Ireland!

Ipswich Town starlet Wickham, who is currently sidelined with an foot injury, is the target of Northern Ireland boss Nigel Worthington.

Wickham qualifies under the parentage rule, via his father Stefan, so despite helping England Under-17s to the European Championship crown this summer, there is a chance that the 17-year-old could play senior football for the Irish.

Worthington said: “The question has been asked about Connor Wickham. There’s potential there, we have done our homework and offered him the opportunity to further his international career with Northern Ireland.

“Hopefully, he will follow young (Oliver) Norwood (Manchester United) and throw in his lot with a squad he can help go places.”

However, Wickham might choose to bide his time before deciding on which country to represent at a senior level.

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Meanwhile, a frenzy of transfer activity is assured at Ipswich Town this week, with ins as well as outs ahead of next weekend’s trip to Crystal Palace.

Following Saturday’s 1-1 home draw against Burnley, Town boss Roy Keane revealed that he was expecting to recruit three new players this week, two of which are Wigan Athletic striker Jason Scotland and Celtic defender Darren O’Dea. The third is believed to be Cardiff City front-man Ross McCormack.

On the departure front, ex-skipper Jon Walters and centre-forward Jon Stead look set to be on their way out of Portman Road during the next few days.

Keane is hoping to wrap up the signature of experienced target man Scotland, after the two clubs agreed a fee of �750,000 last week. The 31-year-old Trinidad & Tobago international should make his decision soon.

And Celtic boss Neil Lennon confirmed, following his side’s win at Livingston, that Town had made an enquiry about O’Dea and that the 23-year-old Irishman would be at Portman Road today to discuss terms.

O’Dea’s limited first-team opportunities at Celtic Park should see him complete a move into the Championship with Town.

Hoops boss Lennon confirmed: “Ipswich have made an enquiry to take him (O’Dea) on loan, so there is a possibility he will be down there on Monday.

“Ipswich have given him the opportunity to go and play and I think it will be good for him to get some games under his belt.”

Meanwhile, Keane explained: “I think they’ll be a lot happening at this football club in the next seven days, which I think is a good thing.

“I’m quietly confident that we’ll have three players in. One you obviously know is Jason Scotland. We’re talking at the moment. We were never going to get it done by the weekend but we hope Jason might be involved next week.

“There’s been no more on Ross McCormack, because there is one or two other clubs in for Steady (Jon Stead). That was always going to be the most complicated one, when you’re doing a swap deal.

“Steady has every entitlement to speak to other clubs. He’s got to pick the right club and that might just upset the deal anyway.”

An injury-time header from Burnley’s Clarke Carlisle denied Town a third win on the bounce, after David Norris had back-heeled Keane’s men into an 86th minute lead.

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