Defoe sets sights on 'dream' 2018 World Cup

Defoe has scored 33 Premier League goals for the Black Cats since joining in January 2015

Defoe is one of just three specialist strikers - with Leicester's Jamie Vardy and Manchester United youngster Marcus Rashford - in Southgate's party for the Germany match and Sunday's World Cup qualifier against Lithuania at Wembley.

Defoe, 34, is in line to win his 56th cap in Wednesday's friendly at world champions Germany - more than three years after his last England outing.

Defoe, who has scored 19 goals in 55 England games, last won a cap against Chile in November 2013. But I was just hoping I would get the opportunity again and now it has come I am delighted.

Jermain Defoe has admitted that he will probably have to leave Sunderland if they are relegated from the Premier League if he wants to remain in the England squad. "I've been blessed to go to two major tournaments and I've never given up hope of coming back".

"I go back to '96 when we almost won the European Championships, we had five or six club leaders in that team - (Alan) Shearer, (Stuart) Pearce at left-back, Tony Adams".

'I'd say I probably need to be in the Premier League but we'll see what happens'. "So it is all about plugging away at those goals and making sure what we do now stands us in good stead for when we reach major tournaments".

Despite his long spell in the global wilderness, Defoe said he never gave up hope of a recall. It's something I wanted to do as a kid, growing up watching the major players on TV and wanting to emulate them. In this team I think I will get chances to score because of the quality.

"Just always keeping my head down, working hard and just having that hope that I'll get back in".

"I've been lucky enough to have experienced it".

"I know how important it is to play for England".

"On a personal note if I'm feeling sharp I believe I can score goals".

The ex-Tottenham striker does, however, admit he needs to play in the top flight, with Sunderland facing an uphill task to stave off relegation down to the Championship.

"I think it's every young player's dream to play for England and to be given that opportunity and chance to represent your country and do everyone proud is a great honour".

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