Sunderland AFC news: Jermain Defoe on West Ham interest, David Moyes press conference

Sunderland boss David Moyes and Claude Puel
Sunderland boss David Moyes and Claude Puel
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Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe has been reflecting on West Ham United's interest in the January transfer window.

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The Black Cats rejected a £6million offer from the Hammers for their 14-goal top scorer and experienced Defoe says the transfer talk was never a distraction for him.

Defoe just carried on doing what he has done throughout his two years on Wearside and, since the turn of the year, has added five goals in as many Premier League games to the nine he scored during the first half of the campaign.

Defoe told talkSPORT: "I'm totally focused on scoring goals, I'm totally focused on helping this football club stay in the Premier League.

"For me, that's the best way to approach it so I'm not distracted. I'll just keep my head down and work hard.

"Even with the speculation about West Ham, it's always nice when you're wanted.

"But at the end of the day, I've been a part of this game for a long time and that's part and parcel of it now, so it was easy for me to see it and just think, 'Okay, that's nice people want me, but I've got to be focused on Sunderland'."

Meanwhile, Defoe and Jordan Pickford are set to be honoured on Sunday night.

Defoe will collect the North-East Football Writers’ Player of the Year gong, with England Under-21 international Pickford collecting the Young Player of the Year.

Completing the Wearside flavour, England skipper Steph Houghton, from South Hetton, was the Women’s Player of the Year.

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And finally, David Moyes is holding his pre-match press conference at the Academy of Light this afternoon and we've got it covered.

Moyes will be grilled on the latest team, injury and selection news ahead of the game with Southampton at the Stadium of Light tomorrow.

Southampton's club-record signing Sofiane Boufal will miss Saturday's visit to Sunderland because of an ankle injury.

His absence, which could yet extend to the EFL Cup final against Manchester United on February 26, further weakens a squad already missing defender Virgil van Dijk, also because of an ankle injury.

Nathan Redmond is pushing for a first-team recall having appeared as a substitute in last week's 3-1 home defeat by West Ham.

Provisional Saints squad: Forster, Taylor, Bertrand, Yoshida, Gardos, Cedric, Hesketh, Romeu, Clasie, Ward-Prowse, Isgrove, Tadic, Redmond, Lewis, Stephens, Hojbjerg, McQueen, Sims, Rodriguez, Gabbiadini, Long.

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