Sheffield Wednesday: England Under-21 call-up for Owls goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith

Joe Wildsmith
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Owls goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith has been selected in the England Under-21 squad for their European Championship qualifier against Switzerland in Thun next week.

The academy graduate, who has recently shrugged off a back problem, has caught the eye for Wednesday this season, making 12 appearances.

His meteoric rise has culminated in him leapfrogging Lewis Price in the pecking order for a starting berth.

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England boss Gareth Southgate has also handed first call-ups to Swansea City’s Matt Grimes, Newcastle United winger Rolando Aarons and Arsenal’s Isaac Hayden. England face Switzerland on Saturday, March 26, kick-off 6pm (GMT).

“This has been a different challenge. Over the last 18 months we have had a really settled squad,” said Southgate. “The first four camps of this campaign we have had a lot of new players to integrate, quite a few players who have stepped up to the first team and unfortunately we have lost quite a few players to injury.

“It’s an opportunity for new players but also quite a lot of work for us to do to get the harmony within the group.”

Full England Under-21 squad:

Goalkeepers: Jordan Pickford (Sunderland), Christian Walton (Brighton & Hove Albion), Joe Wildsmith (Sheffield Wednesday).

Defenders: Calum Chambers (Arsenal), Ben Chilwell (Leicester City), Brendan Galloway (Everton), Kortney Hause (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Dominic Iorfa (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Jack Stephens (Coventry City; on loan from Southampton), Matt Targett (Southampton).

Midfielders: Lewis Baker (Vitesse Arnhem; on loan from Chelsea), Matt Grimes (Blackburn Rovers; on loan from Swansea City), Isaac Hayden (Hull City; on loan from Arsenal), Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea), John Swift (Brentford; on loan from Chelsea), James Ward-Prowse (Southampton).

Forwards: Rolando Aarons (Newcastle United), Chuba Akpom (Hull City; on loan from Arsenal), Demarai Gray (Leicester City), Jordon Ibe (Liverpool), Dominic Solanke (Vitesse Arnhem; on loan from Chelsea), James Wilson (Brighton & Hove Albion; on loan from Manchester Utd).

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