Wickham wears 22 for England

CONNOR Wickham has been handed the number 22 shirt by England as the Under-21s prepare to leave for the start of next week’s European Championships.

The Ipswich Town young gun will tomorrow fly out to Denmark as part of Stuart Pearce’s squad with England’s tournament starting with a difficult test against Spain on Sunday night.

They then complete their group with matches against Ukraine and Czech Republic on June 15 and June 19 respectively.

While shirt numbers only mean so much, it is felt that Wickham will start the tournament behind the likes of Daniel Sturridge, Danny Welbeck and Nathan Delfouneso in the pecking order upfront.

With Stuart Pearce seemingly adopting a 4-3-3 formation for the tournament, in keeping with all of England’s younger, and now senior, teams, Wickham could be used as an impact sub in the central attacking position or on one of the flanks – similarly to how Paul Jewell used him last season.

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Having made his Under-21s debut in the 2-0 defeat by Germany last November, Wickham has since made three appearances for the age group.

But the Town striker, who made such a telling contribution in the Under-17s’ European Championships success this time last year, could find chances harder to come by in Denmark, having been an unused sub in Sunday’s last friendly against Norway.

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The full England squad is: 1 Frankie Fielding (Derby County), 2 Michael Mancienne (Chelsea), 3 Ryan Bertrand (Chelsea), 4 Fabrice Muamba (Bolton Wanderers), 5 Chris Smalling (Manchester United), 6 Phil Jones (Blackburn Rovers), 7 Marc Albrighton (Aston Villa), 8 Jordan Henderson (Sunderland), 9 Danny Welbeck (Manchester United), 10 Daniel Sturridge (Chelsea), 11 Scott Sinclair (Swansea City), 12 Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal), 13 Alex McCarthy (Reading), 14 Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur), 15 James Tomkins (West Ham United), 16 Jack Cork (Chelsea), 17 Tom Cleverley (Manchester United), 18 Henri Lansbury (Arsenal), 19 Jack Rodwell (Everton), 20 Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur), 21 Nathan Delfouneso (Aston Villa), 22 Connor Wickham (Ipswich Town), 23 Jason Steele (Middlesbrough).

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