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Brighton ace Wilson gets call to arms for under-21s

Euro Under-21s


Under-21 boss Andy Crosby

Under-21 boss Andy Crosby

Under-21 boss Andy Crosby

Exciting Brighton forward Ben Wilson and midfielder Amrit Bansal-McNulty, who is on loan at Serie C side Como, are interesting additions to Andy Crosby's Northern Ireland under-21 squad for their European Championship double header against Finland and Ukraine.

Crosby's kids can't qualify for the finals, but are hoping to end the campaign on a high and fancy their chances of success at home to the Finns on Friday and against the Ukrainians tonight week, both behind closed doors at the Ballymena Showgrounds.

Bansal-McNulty is from Hackney in England and qualifies through his Belfast born mum. Currently on QPR's books he has been on loan with Como who play in Italy's third tier. Wilson is another newcomer and brings with him bags of potential having previously been in the under-19s. He is highly regarded at Brighton and has a real eye for goal. Also included at this level for the first time is teenage Watford midfielder JJ McKiernan.

Barrow full-back Bobby Burns - now on loan at Glentoran - and Livingston defender Ciaron Brown, who have both been part of senior men's squads, are back for the two Group 8 matches.

Also included is Linfield striker Shayne Lavery, who played against Denmark last month after initially being included in the senior squad for the Nations League matches against Romania and Norway.

Striker Lee Bonis (Portadown) and defenders Aaron Donnelly (Cliftonville) and Ross Larkin (Linfield) have retained their places in the squad but Chris Gallagher (Glentoran), Kyle McClean (Linfield), Christopher Conn (Burnley) and Harry Robinson (Motherwell) are not included this time around.

Northern Ireland Squad

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Goalkeepers: Conor Hazard (Celtic), Nathan Gartside (Derry City).

Defenders: Eoin Toal (Derry City), Caolan Marron (Glentoran), Ciaron Brown (Livingston), Kofi Balmer (Ballymena United), Jack Scott (Wolves), Daniel Amos (Doncaster), Ross Larkin (Linfield), Aaron Donnelly (Cliftonville), Nathan Kerr (Portadown).

Midfielders: Alfie McCalmont (Leeds United - on loan at Oldham), Caolan Boyd-Munce (Birmingham), JJ McKiernan (Watford), Jake Dunwoody (Derry City), Ethan Galbraith (Manchester United), Amrit Bansal-McNulty (QPR - on loan at Como), Bobby Burns (Barrow - on loan at Glentoran).

Forwards: Shayne Lavery (Linfield), David Parkhouse (Sheffield United - on loan at Hartlepool), Paul O'Neill (Glentoran), Lee Bonis (Portadown), Ben Wilson (Brighton).

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