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Feb 23, 2012

Pearce calls on Richards and Campbell

Manchester City defender Micah Richards has returned to the England squad under caretaker manager Stuart Pearce while Sunderland striker Fraizer Campbell has received his first call-up.

Despite displaying impressive form for his club City, Richards played just once under former England boss Fabio Capello. But the right-back will get a chance to impress when the Three Lions host Netherlands in a friendly next Wednesday.

Campbell, meanwhile, is a shock call-up having been dogged with injury, making just three Premier League starts for Sunderland last season following a serious knee injury. The forward has, however, impressed since making his return in January this year, scoring twice in five outings for Martin O'Neill's Black Cats.

O'Neill told the club's official website: ''There are some terrific players there and getting a place in the squad is extremely difficult. He has only had a couple of games back. It's a boost, even just to be involved for a few days.

''It's fantastic. Whether he does or doesn't play, to me, is immaterial at this stage. The news is a great boost - I think it would have been a bit of a surprise for him. If he gets the opportunity, it would be great to take it.''

Campbell himself responded to his call-up via Twitter. He tweeted: ''Absolutely delighted to be part of the England team. Been the longest and hardest 18 months of my life and feel truly honoured to be given a chance.''

Campbell, 24, joins Wayne Rooney, Darren Bent, Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge as the strikers in a youthful 25-man squad.

Neither Rio Ferdinand nor Frank Lampard have been selected, and the presence of Steven Gerrard suggests the Liverpool midfielder will gain the captain's armband, stripped from John Terry earlier this month.

In addition to Campbell, the only other uncapped member of his squad is Manchester United's Tom Cleverley, although he was selected for the squad to play Netherlands in August, a match which was postponed, and the subsequent Euro 2012 qualifiers with Bulgaria and Wales.

Goalkeepers: Scott Carson (Bursaspor), Joe Hart (Manchester City), Robert Green (West Ham United).

Defenders: Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Ashley Cole (Chelsea), Leighton Baines (Everton), Glen Johnson (Liverpool), Phil Jones (Manchester United), Micah Richards (Manchester City), Chris Smalling (Manchester United), Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur).

Midfielders: Gareth Barry (Manchester City), Tom Cleverley (Manchester United), Stewart Downing (Liverpool), Adam Johnson (Manchester City), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), James Milner (Manchester City), Scott Parker (Tottenham Hotspur), Ashley Young (Manchester United), Theo Walcott (Arsenal).

Forwards: Darren Bent (Aston Villa), Fraizer Campbell (Sunderland), Daniel Sturridge (Chelsea), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Danny Welbeck (Manchester United).

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