Wickham signs Ipswich deal
Ipswich starlet Connor Wickham has pledged his future to the club by signing his first professional contract.
Last Updated: 03/04/10 9:51pm
Ipswich Town starlet Connor Wickham has pledged his future to the Championship club by signing his first professional contract.
Wickham, who turned 17 on Wednesday, had been attracting interest from the Premier League since initially bursting on to the scene late last season.
The striker scored his first league goal for Ipswich last month, coming off the bench to grab an injury-time winner at home to Scunthorpe United.
And he has now opted to shun any overtures from the top flight by signing a two-year deal to stay at Portman Road until 2012.
"I'm delighted to have signed and there was never any doubt that Ipswich is the right club for me," Wickham told the club's official website.
"The club has a great record for bringing young players through and giving them a chance in the first team and I'm proud to be an Ipswich Town player.
"I know there has been talk of other clubs watching me, but I've not thought about that. I left the contract stuff with my family and representatives and just got on with my football.
"The manager has been great and I'm grateful to him for giving me a chance to play in the first team this season and I feel I have developed and matured as a player by being around the senior players."
Ipswich boss Roy Keane added: "It's been a good week for the boy and we can put it to bed now, because the longer it goes on the more speculation there will be.
"He's in and around the first-team squad on merit and deserves it. We think it's the right club for him.
"He's got a good family behind him and now the boy can concentrate on what he should be focusing on - learning his trade and becoming a good player.
"We're here to help him, but ultimately it will come down the boy himself. There are pitfalls ahead, but the boy's got a chance."