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Moyes hoping Defoe's England recall boosts Sunderland survival bid

Jermain Defoe's international recall might just provide struggling Sunderland with the boost they need, according to David Moyes.

News 18 Mar 2017, 17:39 IST
Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe

David Moyes believes Jermain Defoe's return to the England squad could provide a positive knock-on effect to Sunderland's chances of avoiding relegation from the Premier League.

Defoe has been one of the few bright points in Sunderland's season so far, scoring 14 of the club's 24 goals in the league and giving them a fighting chance of staying up.

It is that form which persuaded Gareth Southgate to bring Defoe back from the international wilderness, meaning the 34-year-old could claim his first England cap since November 2013 when the team faces Germany and Lithuania on March 22 and 26, respectively.

At club level things look rather more uneasy for Defoe, as Sunderland sit six points adrift of safety heading into Saturday's home game against Burnley, but Moyes is hopeful his key striker's individual recognition will aid the collective survival battle.

Moyes told reporters: "I think it's a boost to Jermain and hopefully it gives the whole club a lift because we need his goals and we need more goals.

"It's less and less likely that older players get call-ups when they've been out of the team for a while.

"You get players like Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney who play right through to their mid-thirties, but when you've been out of the squad, it shows your professionalism in never giving up on it."

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