Derek Wright and Wilfried Zaha

By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter

Long-serving Newcastle United physio Derek Wright is lending his expertise to the England under-21 team for this summer's European Championships in Israel.

Wright, whose healing hands have tended to stars like Alan Shearer, Peter Beardsley, Kieron Dyer and Hatem Ben Arfa during almost 30 years at St. James' Park, is part of the Three Lions medical team for the tournament.

He is one of Stuart Pearce's most trusted staff, having worked with the under-21 manager during his playing days on Tyneside, and has been involved in each of the former United defender's four European Championship campaigns.

In the past, Wright has also worked with the senior national team - an indication of just how highly he is regarded in the game - and is joined by Sunderland's Dave Galley at their tournament base in Netanya. 

England's first game is against Italy on Wednesday evening and Wright has a key role to play as he is working to ensure that Wilfried Zaha is fit in time for the opener.

Wright has been taking the Manchester United new boy through individual drills and Pearce told the official Football Association website: "The plan for him (Zaha) was to do the warm up in training and then work with the physios.

"We will have a look on Tuesday to see where he is in regards to his fitness."