Jermain Defoe: 'Gareth Southgate has always impressed me'

Interim England manager Gareth Southgate on the touchline during his side's World Cup qualifier against Scotland at Wembley on November 11, 2016
© SilverHub
Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe says that he has always been impressed by Gareth Southgate, both as a player and during his managerial career.

Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe has said that Gareth Southgate is "fully equipped" to handle the pressure which comes with being manager of England.

Southgate is currently preparing for his first match in permanent charge of the Three Lions after impressing during a four-game interim period last year.

The former Under-21 boss has recalled Defoe to the national squad, and the Black Cats forward has praised Southgate ahead of Wednesday's friendly with Germany.

The 34-year-old told reporters: "I had a conversation with him on the phone. He is someone who has always impressed me. I remember playing against him.

"He is genuinely a really nice man and someone who I believe will do well because he has been there and done it, he has played in major tournaments. He is fully equipped to handle the pressure.

"I think it's refreshing for a player to have a manager in front of you who has been there and done it so it's good."

As well as the trip to Germany, England also host Lithuania in a World Cup qualifier during the international break.

Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring during the Premier League game between Newcastle United and Sunderland on March 20, 2016
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