Worthington picks Barton, recalls Celtic duo
Promising midfielder Adam Barton has been drafted into the Northern Ireland senior squad for the first time.
The 19-year-old is a surprise pick by Nigel Worthington for the UEFA EURO 2012 qualifiers against Italy and Faroe Islands next month.
Barton has been fast-tracked after making six league appearances, scoring once in the process, for Preston North End this season.
The Blackburn-born player, who qualifies through one of his parents, has played for Northern Ireland's U-19s.
Worthington has recalled Celtic pair Niall McGinn, following his recovery from a broken foot, and Paddy McCourt. The latter is currently sidelined with a shoulder injury, but is expected to be fit for at least one of the qualifiers.
Worthington said: "I am delighted to bring Adam in. I have monitored him very closely and he has always caught the eye. I have no qualms about bringing him into the senior group."