Why devastating news for ‘heartbroken’ Sheffield United man could lead to career high for Sheffield Wednesday forward

Two Sheffield Wednesday players will tomorrow get a pretty good indication of whether they will be afforded the chance to experience what one has described as ‘the pinnacle of football’ this summer.

By Alex Miller
Tuesday, 18th May 2021, 12:28 pm

Scotland pair Liam Palmer and Callum Paterson will wait to see if they are to be included in Steve Clarke’s provisional 26-man side for friendlies against Holland and Luxembourg ahead of this summer’s European Championships.

Squads must be finalised by June 1, with their opening fixtures against Czech Republic to take place a fortnight later. And Clarke has suggested the 26 names, already boosted from 23 by UEFA last month, will likely be those to take them into their first major tournament since 1998.

Scotland have been given clearance to travel to Spain for warm-weather training, before flying to Portugal to take on Holland and then travelling to Luxembourg for a final warm-up fixture.

Sheffield United forward Oli McBurnie is out of Scotland's Euro 2020 campaign, which could be of benefit to Wednesday's Callum Paterson.

Right-back Palmer looks to be a shoo-in having played a key role in qualifying and will challenge Rangers teenager Nathan Patterson to be first back-up to Motherwell’s Stephen O’Donnell.

But his 17-cap teammate Paterson was left out of Clarke’s last squad and faces a more anxious wait. His hopes already boosted by the squad expansion ruling, he may well benefit from an injury to Sheffield United rival Oli McBurnie, who posted on social media to confirm he would be unable to take a striker spot at the tournament.

“I'm devastated that I suffered a fractured metatarsal which ruled me out for the rest of the season and has unfortunately ruled me out for the Euros,” he wrote.

“Not to be able to go to that tournament with the boys is heartbreaking for me. Thank you for all your messages and support.”

Speaking to The Star in March about his selection for the Euros, the nine-goal utility man said: “It’s a massive part of my thinking.

“I’ve always said it’s the pinnacle of all football, playing in those tournaments. For me, if that’s not what you want to do, there’s no point in playing.

“To be selected would just be the icing on the cake for me. I’ve given everything I can and it’s not up to me at the end of the day. I’ve got to do everything I can to be there.”

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