Recall deserved but it's an embarrassment England had to call him up - pundit, fan and player reaction to Jermain Defoe's goalscoring return

Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring the opening goal
Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring the opening goal
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Alan Shearer says Jermain Defoe deserved his England call up but says it highlights the dearth of striking talent at Gareth Southgate's disposal.

With Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney injured, 34-year-old Defoe won a surprise call-up to the squad to face Germany and Lithuania having won the last of his 55 caps in November 2013.

But his form and 14 goals for Sunderland this season won him an international recall, with Southgate full of praise for Defoe after the Sunderland striker rewarded him with the opening goal in the 2-0 win over Lithuania.

Fans, players and pundits were all quick to have their say. Here's the best of the reaction to Defoe's goalscoring return.

Former England captain Alan Shearer:

"Look at yesterday’s team and they will not be troubling anyone of any note next summer, even with Harry Kane back in," said Shearer in his column in The Sun.

Jermain Defoe warming up before the game

Jermain Defoe warming up before the game

"Indeed, it is an embarrassment that Gareth had to call upon a 34-year-old who has not played for England in four years to play the striker’s role.

"This is not a slight on Jermain Defoe as he deserved the recall and showed why at Wembley with his goal. But where are the other England strikers?

"In my day we had myself, Teddy Sheringham, Les Ferdinand, Andy Cole, Robbie Fowler, Ian Wright, Chris Sutton, Stan Collymore, Matt Le Tissier, David Hirst - the list seemed endless.

"There is a dearth of talent and it is a major concern."

England boss Gareth Southgate congratulates Jermain Defoe

England boss Gareth Southgate congratulates Jermain Defoe

England teammate Adam Lallana:

Lallana teed up Jamie Vardy for England's second goal of the afternoon following Defoe's substituion, but the 34-year-old showed his potential worth and the Liverpool midfielder echoed Southgate's claim that he can be a realistic option for next summer's World Cup.

England are well on course to qualify, four points clear at the top of their group and still yet to concede a goal in qualifying.

Lallana said there were no signs of ageing in the poacher and insisted he is playing like a man ten years younger.

He said: "He deserves it because he's been playing some of the best football of his career this season, scoring goals.

"I think he's here on merit and he's proved what he's about, what he can bring and what an option he is for Russia in a year's time.

"It still feels like you're playing with a 25-year-old Jermain Defoe."

England boss Gareth Southgate:

"It was a great moment for him.

"He was thrilled to be back involved in the squad and he has enjoyed his week immensely.

"I'm pleased for the two lads who have got the goals, a great story for Jermain and I felt Jamie [Vardy] added something to us.

"The bigger picture for us was his contribution throughout the camp.

"His professionalism was great for some of the other players to see and he’s had a really positive impact on everybody.

"We’ve got to look every time we get together as to who’s in form; I don’t know if we can have a pecking order because players that are playing well deserve that opportunity.

"We're never able to pick a full cohort, so it's important we can call upon the likes of Jermain and he can have the impact he does like he did today.

"I would have put my house on him scoring at some stage."

Meanwhile, on Twitter:

Gary Lineker tweeted: "England's best friend is Defoe. One-nil." Our Sunderland AFC reporter Phil Smith wrote: "Jermain Defoe the first #safc goal scorer for England since Darren Bent in 2010. The great Len Shackleton the last before that in 1956."

Henry Winter, of The Times, wrote: "Jermain Defoe joins Martin Peters on 20 #eng goals. One more and he equals Steven Gerrard, Kevin Keegan and Mick Channon."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty added: "Lovely, crisp sidefoot finish from Raheem Sterling's cross. Trademark Defoe."

Meanwhile, SAFC North Yorkshire @SAFC_NYorkshire tweeted: "@IAmJermainDefoe Just ran around the garden shouting your name! And then my wife told me off!"

Jamie Cook simply tweeted: "Legend."