After heading to Canada to get the guaranteed playing time that would seal a World Cup spot, the ex Premier League hotshot has had to settle for a place on standby.
The former Spurs man enjoyed a scintillating start to the season while he was still at White Hart Lane, scoring bucket loads of goals in his appearances in the cups, and even though he left the club before Spring, the goal poacher managed to take his tally to 10 goals in 23 games, the third best of the entire squad.
His desire to get regular first team football ahead of the World Cup played a large part in his willingness to up and leave North London and head half way across the world to sign up for MLS side Toronto FC in time for the start of the North American season.
Defoe's time in Canada started well, finding the net 3 times in his first 2 games, however a hamstring injury ruled him out for over a month and he has only just returned to the starting lineup.
Whether that injury had any effect on Roy Hodgson's decision making or not, we'll likely never know. What we do know is that when the former Fulham boss announced his World Cup 23, Defoe wasn't present, with Tottenham's record European goalscorer having to make do with a place on the standby list.
"It's hard to find words to describe the feeling," Defoe told BBC Radio 5 live.
"All I've done is got my head down and play football. I've continued to do what I've always done - scored goals and worked hard."
"In life you can't expect anything, but I felt I had a good chance of going because I've been involved in most of the squads. I feel devastated."
Defoe has scored 19 goals in 55 appearances for England, and if he fails to head to Brazil the former West Ham and Portsmouth man may well consider his international career.