Arsenal great: Connor Wickham can learn from Sunderland teammate Jermain Defoe

Former Arsenal striker Alan Smith says that Sunderland youngster Connor Wickham will benefit from playing with Jermain Defoe.

Arsenal great Alan Smith has written in The Telegraph that Connor Wickham can learn from Sunderland teammate Jermain Defoe.

Former Tottenham Hotspur striker Defoe joined Sunderland from Toronto FC in the January transfer window and has already started to weave his magic at the Stadium of Light.

The 32-year-old has scored one goal in two appearances in the Premier League, while having a pass accuracy of 70%.

Defoe knows the Premier League inside out, having played for the likes of West Ham United, Tottenham and Portsmouth.

Former Arsenal striker Smith believes that Defoe’s arrival could prove to be beneficial for Wickham in the long run.

“I am not sure about emulating the Quinn-Phillips double-act but Connor Wickham and Jermain Defoe can certainly make life much more comfortable at Sunderland,” the 52-year-old wrote in The Telegraph. “Both on the scoresheet against Burnley, they look well suited.

“And for Wickham, in particular, this could prove a valuable time. Just training every day with Defoe should teach him an awful lot. At 21, Wickham can yet enjoy the career many predicted for him as a teenager.”

What can Wickham learn from Defoe?

Wickham and Defoe both were on target for Sunderland against Burnley at the Stadium of Light in the Premier League on Saturday.

While the 21-year-old opened the scoring in the 20th minute, Defoe doubled the advantage on 34 minutes to wrap up a 2-0 win.

The two strikers combined well with each other and showed a good understanding despite having been paired only recently.

Defoe is a superb finisher and is brilliant inside the opposition’s penalty box. At 21, Wickham is maturing and developing, and he can certainly learn this trait from his Sunderland teammate.

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