Former international pair Matt Upson and Jermaine Jenas call on England to call-up Jermain Defoe

Picture Supplied by Action Images

The two former England internationals are backing the Sunderland striker to ply for England again.

Former England internationals Matthew Upson and Jermaine Jenas have been highlighting the chances Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe must have of making an impact again at international level.

The pair were talking on BBC Radio 5 live when the statistic that Defoe has been involved in 21 of Sunderland’s last 40 goals.

Sunderland's Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring their first goalSunderland's Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring their first goal

Former West Ham defender Upson was clearly in no doubt. He feels the Sunderland striker should be in the England squad:

“For me, he is an England centre-forward.

“It’s fabulous stat(istics). He is playing as well as I think I’ve seen him play.

“Just because you are fighting at the bottom of the league does not mean you haven’t got a player who is in outstanding form who can do something. He’s experienced and he can score goals.”

Sunderland's Jermain Defoe looks dejectedSunderland's Jermain Defoe looks dejected

Jenas was much the same. The ex-Spurs midfielder, who played 21 times for England, feels that Defoe may be England’s most deadly finisher and deserves a look-in at the national set-up again:

“Jermain Defoe has continued to bang in goals, at the end of last season and this season. How he hasn’t had a sniff at getting back in.

“I’d probably go as far to say he’s the most natural finisher we’ve got.”

Sunderland’s star striker has not played for England since the 8-0 win against San Marino in March 2013 a – game in which he scored twice.

Picture Supplied by Action ImagesPicture Supplied by Action Images

Sunderland may be in a perpetual struggle to survive in the Premier League but Defoe has been key to keeping them up.

He scored 18 goals in 34 appearances last season and already has seven in 13 this – as he again hopes to secure Sunderland’s place in the top-flight.

Even at 34-years-old, surely he deserves a chance again with his nation to add to his 19 goals and 55 caps with England.

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch