Ex-Newcastle United midfielder Rob Lee on Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe

Sunderland will host Newcastle United at the Stadium of Light in the Premier League on Sunday.

Rob Lee has suggested in The Chronicle that Newcastle United need to be careful of Sunderland star Jermain Defoe during the Tyne-Wear derby at the Stadium of Light on Sunday.

Defoe has not been in exactly great form for Sunderland since joining them from Toronto FC in the January transfer window, but former Newcastle midfielder Lee believes that the striker will be looking to make his mark in the Premier League clash.

“I played with Jermain Defoe at West Ham when he was just a kid,” the 49-year-old wrote in The Chronicle. “He was and is a terrific goalscorer who lives for these big games. He will fancy a goal. I know him, he is going want to make his mark.”

Defoe has scored just two goals and created only three chances in nine Premier League appearances for Sunderland, while having a pass accuracy of 77% and a shot accuracy of 54%.

The former West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur striker was signed to solve Sunderland’s goalscoring problems, but it has not quite worked out that way.

However, Defoe remains a striker who knows the Premier League inside out and will be determined to get back his form.

The two-week international break will have refreshed the Englishman, who will have worked hard in training and must be ready to get back onto the pitch.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch