Former Sunderland defender Gary Bennett has told the club’s official website of his delight at seeing Jermain Defoe arrive at the Stadium of Light and has hailed Gus Poyet’s input in transfer discussions.
Defoe has joined the Black Cats on a three-and-a-half-year contract following a 12-month stint in MLS with Toronto FC.
He returns to the Premier League as a proven goalscorer at that level from his time with West Ham United, Tottenham Hotspur and Portsmouth.
Sunderland have drafted him in to add potency to their attack and hope to see him fire them up the top-flight standings.
Bennett believes he will prove to be a shrewd addition, with the England international a player the club have been linked with in the past.
They were unable to secure his services on those occasions, but Poyet has been able to convince Defoe that Wearside is the best place for him at this stage of his career.
Bennett told the club’s official website: “I think it is a massive signing. When you look at his record and his pedigree he is right up there at the top in terms of scoring goals in the Barclays Premier League, and I think that bonus was that he wanted to come to the north east because we have been linked with him before over the years and it has been a case of the north-south divide.
“He revealed that he spoke to Gus [Poyet] and he has obviously won him over, so I think that he is a great addition and it is a great deal for the club.
“He gives you energy, sharpness and he wants to run beyond so I think that he is going to get better and better, because you have to remember that he has been out of the Barclays Premier League for a few months so over time you will see Jermain Defoe at his best.
“If he gets an opportunity he will hit the target because he is a constant threat, so what we have to make sure we do is supply the service.”
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Defoe made his Sunderland debut last weekend away at former employers Tottenham and put in a lively display in familiar surroundings.
He started at White Hart Lane with Steven Fletcher alongside him, but Connor Wickham is another option available to Poyet if he decides to go with a little-and-large combination.
The 32-year-old has 124 Premier League goals to his name at present and will be hoping to add to that tally in the not too distant future.