Newcastle, Bournemouth or Everton? Pundits on Jermain Defoe's transfer options
By Tim Clement
Last Updated: 06/05/17 7:29am
The Soccer Saturday pundits discuss the future of Jermain Defoe ahead of his expected exit from Sunderland this summer.
The 34-year-old's 14 goals were not enough to save the Blacks Cats from relegation, with David Moyes admitting a contract clause could see him depart this summer.
With the striker sure to have plenty of suitors, having been linked with Bournemouth and West Ham in January, we asked Paul Merson, Phil Thompson, Charlie Nicholas and Matt Le Tissier where they thought he would he next...
There's only one club for Jermain Defoe and that's Bournemouth.
Wherever Defoe is going he's leaving Sunderland because he wants to go to the World Cup. Wherever he goes he needs to play football and there are not many teams that play two up front in the Premier League.
Bournemouth also create chances. They are a settled club - if the manager loses the first four games of next season he's still going to be there - and for me they tick every box for Defoe.
Defoe would be a good fit with Eddie Howe. Like I said they play two up front and create plenty of chances. You are not living off scraps so it's a complete no-brainer for me.
All of the clubs who come up will surely be interested in him but I would think straight away that Newcastle would be the ideal one. Staying up in the same area would be ideal for him, although that obviously wouldn't sit well with Sunderland fans.
Dwight Gayle has done well but has never delivered in the Premier League, likewise for Aleksandar Mitrovic, whereas Defoe has proven yet again that he has that qualify.
West Brom and Stoke might also be interested. There are probably also a few top sides that might take him for a back-up option but you'd like to see him go somewhere where he starts regularly.
Another option is Everton, if Romelu Lukaku leaves. While they try to find a replacement, Defoe would be an ideal stop-gap fit for them.
I would not be surprised if Newcastle or Brighton are interested in him. How many players can guarantee you double figures when you don't create a lot of chances?
The problem is whether he fits into their system because not many managers fancy him as a lone striker. It's not to do with age, it's about how well he is playing. Will he get back in the England side? Probably not if everyone is fit.
I'm tempted to say Bournemouth because they're a nice passing side but there wouldn't be any assurances he'd start, especially when Callum Wilson is fit.
Matt Le Tissier
I think Bournemouth would be the favourites for him. I think they're a good team that create chances and he'd be a good player to be on the end of them. I certainly think he'll get more chances than he's had this season.
I'd be surprised if he could get back in the England squad though. He's obviously gone a good few games without a goal so when you take into account his age, he's very easy to leave out.
I did suggest back in January that we could have done with him at Southampton, but now we've got Manolo Gabbiadini and Charlie Austin coming back.