Walcott Named In Under-21 Squad

19 March 2009 02:09
Theo Walcott

and Aaron Lennon

have been named in the England

Under-21 squad for the friendlies against Norway and France in the next international break.

Arsenal

winger Walcott, who is established in Fabio Capello's senior squad, has only just recovered from a shoulder injury picked up with the full team in November.

The 20-year-old could still be called up for senior duty, which is what happened to James Milner

for the recent Spain trip after initially being named in Stuart Pearce's squad.

Capello's seniors have a friendly against Slovakia on Saturday, March 28 and a World Cup qualifier against Ukraine the following Wednesday, with Pearce's youngsters playing the day before each game.

Milner is also in Pearce's squad, who travel to face Norway in Sandefjord before playing France at Nottingham Forest

's City Ground.

Joe Hart

, Michael Mancienne, Micah Richards

and David Wheater

are also included along with Lennon, who has been in impressive form for Tottenham and had been tipped for a senior call-up.

Everton

youngster Jack Rodwell is also selected.

"We wanted to take on a Scandinavian side as we've got Finland in the European Championships so Norway was a good option," Pearce said.

"On top of that we wanted another 'A-line' nation that hadn't reached the finals and they don't come much better than France, so it's a fantastic game for us.

"The two games will give us a full 10 days to work together. We can work on various things, both in the games and on the training pitch.

"It's not often you get the chance to have that length of time with the players and it'll be a vital period to prepare for the summer."

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