Relegation-threatened Premier League side Sunderland are struggling to finish the current campaign on a high after posting one too many poor results.
Coach David Moyes says Three Lions striker Jermaine Defoe has found his rhythm while on international duty and that he would be crucial as the club fight relegation.
Moyes is confident that the Black Cats can still survive after all that has happened. And he knows that Defoe would play a crucial role.
Defoe was drafted to the team that played Lithuania during the international window. He broke his three-year hiatus in the international scene by netting his 20th for England.
Moyes is happy that the striker scored as the 34-year old had gone four games in the league without a goal. He grabbed a brace in the 4-0 stunning victory over Crystal Palace in early February, offering hope to the team but the goals soon dried up.
“I thought yesterday in training, as a lot of players do when they come back from international football, he’d come back with a bit of spring in his step, that bit of brightness about him. Especially when you’ve played for England and scored a goal, so hopefully we can turn that into goals for Sunderland,” the former Manchester United coach said.
He asked that the rest of the players work hard at creating chances and scoring goals like they always talk about during trainings. He praised the effort of the team not to concede goals. He said the Burnley match was one that they did that even though they lost their chances. Fabio Borini, Adnan Januzaj, Seb Larsson and Billy Jones had chances but they all failed to convert them.
With less than two months left in the league, Sunderland would need to win lots of games to escape the bottom three.