Bournemouth boss reacts to Sunderland owner Stewart Donald's 'cheeky' attempt to sign Jermain Defoe
Eddie Howe says Jermain Defoe still has a 'big future' at AFC Bournemouth.
Defoe joined the Cherries on a free transfer from Sunderland in the summer of 2017 following relegation to the Championship.
Previously linked with a summer move to Scottish giants Rangers, earlier this week Sunderland owner Stewart Donald also revealed he had made a 'cheeky' attempt in the summer to bring Defoe back to the Stadium of Light.
Donald told BBC Radio Newcastle: "I asked in the summer if we could and the answer came we couldn’t.
"We might ask again but it was a pretty strong no. It was a cheeky request though!
"I was wondering if they might contribute to his wages."
The 36-year-old scored 34 goals in 87 league appearances for Sunderland before joining AFC Bournemouth.
Defoe's manager at Bournemouth was asked about the striker's future at his pre-match press conference - and Howe insists Defoe remains an important player for the south coast side.
"He’s a very important player for a host of different reasons.
"His experience and wisdom he passes on to the players – he has always got a really good, useful thing to say in any situation.
"On the training ground he is really beneficial for everybody - for me and for the young strikers we have in imparting his knowledge on the pitch.
"We have seen recently in training he has looked really sharp and I have been really pleased with his general performances in training. He is a huge part of what we do."