Defoe has found the net 16 times in all competitions.
Defoe emphasises the need for consistency over the course of a campaign, hence the healthy target that he set himself. His 16th goal of the season last weekend against Norwich City helped them move to within a point of the Canaries, and safety, in a 3-0 win at Carrow Road.
He is quoted in the Chronicle, saying: “Consistency is the big thing. There’s no point scoring goals up until January and in the second half of the season when it really counts not scoring any.
“Forget formations and positions and managers and team-mates, nothing changes. You’re still focused on waiting for that chance, or half-chance, and making the most of it.
“There are obviously times when you miss a few chances but even when that happens you’ve still got to be confident and not afraid to miss.
“I’ve always said my target is 20 for the season in all competitions. If you can get 15 to 20 goals, then I’ve always said that’s good because it helps the team.
“I’ve got 16 now, so I just want to keep it going and keep getting into positions where I’m going to score."
The stakes are high now for Sunderland and they are going to need someone to find the net on a regular basis between now and the end of the season. Defoe will be hoping to take a big step towards his target this weekend when the Black Cats welcome Arsenal to the Stadium of Light on Sunday.
Defoe has a proven record of scoring goals in big games in the Premier League, and achieving his target could be just enough to get Sunderland to safety.