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International Roundup: Wickham On The Scoresheet, Meyler Makes Decent Irish Debut

Connor Wickham celebrates his goal against Norway on Monday night.
Connor Wickham celebrates his goal against Norway on Monday night.

As the international break comes to a close with the second round of games we take our globe-trotting eyes to every single Sunderland player involved in action and see how they did.

There were games played all over the place, and we take in the performances of Seb Larsson, David Vaughan (remember him?) and several of our younger players as we hope they come back in full fitness and ready to take on Liverpool this coming weekend.

Get your passports ready as we take a trip around the globe...

We start with the young'uns and look at how John Egan got on for the Irish Under-21 side as they took on Italy. Over in Casarano the side scored a very, very impressive 4-2 win over the Italians, with Egan looking very impressive from a central defensive position.

Egan made a number of superb blocks and challenges as the boys in green signed off their qualifying group in style, even if it wasn't enough to qualify and Italy are already through to next summer's tournament, but certainly a game which will bring Egan back to Wearside all smiles.

In other youngsters news, Connor Wickham and Danny Rose both started for England's Under-21's against Norway in Chesterfield. Wickham grabbed the only goal of the game in a 1-0 win which sent England through as group winners.

Wickham pounced on a defensive lapse from the Norwegians to calmly side foot the ball into the far corner from close range - a very well taken finish. Sadly this was only real involvement in the game as he was very quiet before and after the goal, and eventually replaced on 75 minutes.

Rose had a decent game, and earned the Man Of The Match award. Rose seemed eager to get forward at every single opportunity and put a few decent ball's into the box. He'll offer us a great attacking threat down the left hand side as well as being reliable at the back.

David Meyler made his first international start in Ireland's 4-1 win over Oman at Craven Cottage. Meyler had his usual game in midfield, keeping the passes simple and rarely wasting possession. He certainly looked a cut above the likes of Paul Green who tends to be a Trapattoni favourite in the middle. Meyler will have put himself very much in the frame for the next game.

As the game wore on he even had the audacity to try and open his international scoring account, but his shot from distance sailed wide.

James McClean enjoyed a busy substitutes appearance for the side two, almost finding the net twice. Entering the field to chants of "he tweets what he wants" from the 'home' fans. Firstly his freekick was well stopped by Ali Al-Habsi, and moments later he flashed a volley narrowly over the bar following some good play. This is what will get him in the team, not petulance.

Keiren Westwood was allowed to leave the squad and return to Sunderland early after being informed that David Forde would be starting in goal. John O'Shea was also not required for the match.

Seb Larsson started on the right of midfield for Sweden in their 2-0 win over Kazakhstan and played the full 90 minutes. He looked impressive, especially his set-pieces and crossing. We know that's the biggest strength of his game but he can also be quite hit and miss from time to time. Not last night though as he chucked in quality delivery after quality delivery.

David Vaughan continued his comeback from injury by coming off the bench during Wales' embarrassing 6-1 defeat at the hands of Serbia. Vaughan was quite and looked very sluggish. At least he had the excuse of playing his first first team football since the end of last season due to injury, unlike many of his teammates. The 45 minutes he got under his belt will go along way towards getting him back near the first team.

Simon Mignolet was once again an unused substitute as Belgium drew 1-1 with Croatia. Thibault Courtois seems to have firmly established himself as Belgium's No.1 keeper, leaving Mignolet as the perennial substitute.

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