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Pienaar signs with Wits

SOUTH AFRICA
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Wickham staying at Sunderland

Connor Wickham will not be returning to Sheffield Wednesday on loan, and instead goes into the Sunderland squad to face Norwich City on Sunday.

Connor Wickham joined Sunderland from Ipswich Town in the summer of 2011
Connor Wickham impressed during his spell in the Championship

Wickham, 19, had enjoyed a recent temporary spell at Hillsborough which culminated in a game-winning goal for the Championship club in his last appearance against Leicester City on Saturday.

Wednesday manager Dave Jones was keen to keep the striker at the club, but conceded that he understood Sunderland’s decision to take back their young asset.

“I've been really pleased with Connor during his loan, he was a pleasure to work with and a talented player,” he told the Sheffield Telegraph. “I've spoken with Martin O'Neill and we really wanted Connor to stay but I fully understand that Sunderland have a striker shortage at the moment. If it is something we get a chance to look at again, we would certainly like to have him back.”

It is believed Jones asked to keep Wickham for at least four weeks, with Sunderland boss O’Neill ultimately taking the decision to recall the player in a bid to improve the club’s shortage of goals.

The England Under-21 international will now go straight into the squad for Sunday’s clash against Norwich, as he continues to search for his first Premier League goal of the season.

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