Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe has “an idea” of what his next move will be as he aims to make the England squad for the 2018 World Cup.
Defoe hit 15 Premier League goals in 2016-17, but it was not enough for Sunderland to stave off relegation to the second tier.
The 34-year-old’s form was good enough to earn a recall to the England set-up for the first time since 2013 for the Russia 2018 qualifier against Lithuania in March, scoring in a 2-0 victory at Wembley.
Defoe is again in Gareth Southgate’s squad for upcoming matches against Scotland and France and he hopes to retain his place until the World Cup.
“I want to be in Russia, 100 per cent. If I continue scoring goals, then I believe the manager will take me. But obviously I’ve got to keep scoring,” Defoe told The Telegraph.
— Jermain Defoe (@IAmJermainDefoe) May 25, 2017
A move away from Sunderland will be key to achieving such an ambition and the striker said his future will be clarified next month.
“When you’re scoring goals, let’s be honest, clubs are going to want you. I’ve had a lot of interest. But I’ve got an idea where I’m going. When it comes to July everyone will know. I know where I want to go to kick on again. I don’t want to stand still,” said Defoe, who admitted the manager he will work with is an important factor in his decision-making process.
“Partly it’s how he wants to play, but mainly it’s, ‘is he comfortable trying to improve me?’ Some managers just let senior players get on with it. I don’t want that. I want to be challenged.
“I’m like a sponge, I think about stuff. I think, ‘if I was a manager how would I play this?’ I think of the bosses I’ve had, I like what he does, I’ll do it like him or I definitely won’t do it like that. I’m thinking like that more and more.
“I’m in my car on the way to the ground, thinking, I wonder what team the manager’s going to pick, this is what I’d pick. I suppose I’m heading in the direction of being a coach.”
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