BASILDON-born James Tomkins has been called into the England Under-21 squad for the European Championships as a replacement for Micah Richards.

The 22-year-old got the nod after Manchester City defender Richards withdrew last week because of a hamstring injury.

Tomkins, who is a former Chalvedon School pupil, will join up with the squad in time for Sunday’s friendly against Norway in Southampton.

Tomkins, capped nine times at under-21 level, was a member of Stuart Pearce’s squad which made the final in 2009 and has also appeared for the side in qualifying.

But he did not make the original 23-man squad selected for the European Championships.

The squad head to Denmark next Monday in preperation for their opening Group B match against Spain on Sunday, June 12.