Jermain Defoe: Give lads time to gel under new Sunderland boss David Moyes

Jermain Defoe has told Sunderland fans that it may take a while before the players fully get used to David Moyes' tactics.

Monday, 5th September 2016, 6:00 am
Jermain Defoe converts his penalty opener at Southampton last weekend. Picture by Frank Reid

The Black Cats boss has been in the hotseat six weeks now after taking over from Sam Allardyce on July 23

Moyes has been using the international fortnight to work on team shape at the Academy of Light with the players who haven’t joined up with national squads.

Defoe says the Premier League break is a great opportunity for the manager to spend more time with the squad, especially as he hasn’t been at the helm for very long.

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But the striker says it ‘takes time’ for players to adapt properly to a new way of working.

Defoe said: “For a manager, especially one who has just come into a club, the international break is perfect.

“It gives him the time to work with the team for two weeks on the training ground.

“It is not easy, to be honest, to come into a football club and change everything overnight, that never happens. It doesn’t matter how good the players are.

“Different ideas, different managers, different ways of playing – it gives him time to work with the team.”

Sunderland went into the international break buoyed by picking up their first point of the season in last week’s 1-1 draw at Southampton.

Having started with two defeats, it was important for the morale of the team that they got their Premier League season up and running.

It meant they could go into the international break in a positive frame of mind, according to Defoe, who grabbed Sunderland’s goal from the penalty spot.

The forward, who missed out on a recall to the England squad, said: “I think it has come at a good time.

“It is important we didn’t lose at Southampton so everyone goes away confident after getting the first point.

“It was a tough game.

“They are a good team, it was a hot and that saps your energy, but we were disciplined, we had a good shape and made it difficult for them.

“The manager wanted us to counter-attack with quality, we managed to get the penalty and I thought we would have stuck it out and got all three points. It wasn’t meant to be. We’d have taken a point before.”