10 things you need to know about Connor Wickham plus video of him in action

He is being chased by all the top teams in England and has already been compared to Wayne Rooney, but just who is Connor Wickham?

Here is the MirrorFootball guide to the teenage starlet who has caught Harry Redknapp and Arsene Wenger's eye.

Arsenal launch £7m bidding war with Spurs for 17 year-old Ipswich wonderkid Wickham - Exclusive  

1) Wickham only signed his first professional contract four months ago - he only turned 17 on March 31. A boyhood Liverpool fan, Connor's hero is Reds star striker Fernando Torres.

2) Despite his age, the highly-rated striker is already 6ft 4in tall and 14 stone. He is said to be as good as Wayne Rooney was at the same age, but a lot bigger. Roy Keane, his manager at Ipswich said in May: "The fans would lynch me if I sold Connor."

3) Reading will be kicking themselves at his rise to prominence - the young starlet was on the Royals' books for four years before his dad's job with the army took the family from Aldershot to Colchester, forcing him to switch to Ipswich.

4) He made his debut for Ipswich in April 2009, aged 16 years and 11 days, coming on as a substitute in a 3–1 home defeat against Doncaster. That made him the club's youngest ever player, beating the record set by Jason Dozzell in February 1984.

5) He scored his first two goals for the club in only his fourth appearance, in a League Cup first round tie against Shrewsbury. It took him a little longer to get his first league goal: he opened his account in March 2010 with a stoppage-time winner against Scunthorpe United.

He said: “It was the best moment I’ve had in football so far. Because it was the 93rd minute, I just ran off to the touchline towards the fitness coach and got bundled by all the players. My parents recorded it so we’ve watched it over and over again.”

6) Such is the level of interest in the young forward, that whenever he plays for either Ipswich's first team or reserves, the club has to find two dozen tickets for the scouts who come to watch him in action.

7) Former Ipswich and England defender Kevin Beattie has already called Wickham, "an incredible talent," adding: "The boy has everything, strength, skill, the lot. It would not surprise me if he were partnering Wayne Rooney up front for England in a few years time. He impresses me that much."

8) Despite being linked with big money moves away, Connor is keeping his feet on the ground. He said last month: "Ipswich is the only thing on my mind, I've got no intentions of moving elsewhere.

"To be reading in the papers that I'm worth £10m or that Premier League clubs are interested is a bit of an experience in itself. I've got a good head on my shoulders so it's not going to make me get big-time or anything like that."

9) He certainly doesn't lack confidence though, and says: "In five years time I'll hopefully be playing week-in, week-out and playing for the England senior team in the World Cup."

10) Wickham has represented England at Under-16 and Under-17 level. He was a key part of the team to win the Under 17s European Championship in May, scoring both goals as in the semi-final win over France, and s superb individual winner in the final against Spain. (See video below).

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williamhill.com

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