Belfast Telegraph

Fletcher keen on Defoe partnership

Steven Fletcher says there is a buzz around Sunderland following Jermain Defoe's arrival.

Keen to return home after an ill-fated spell in Major League Soccer with Toronto FC, Gus Poyet's side fought off competition from a host of other Barclays Premier League clubs to sign the England international.

The 32-year-old penned a three-and-a-half year deal at the Stadium of Light on Friday and was thrown straight into the starting line-up the following day at Tottenham.

Defoe's former club triumphed 2-1 thanks to Christian Eriksen's late strike, but Fletcher was suitably impressed by the Sunderland new boy.

"There is a buzz about the training ground and the fans are delighted to have a massive signing like Jermain," the Scotland international, who played in a front two with Defoe, said.

"He is a great player and I think hopefully a few of the boys will learn off him as well.

"We changed our formation a bit for the game and it was working well but we switched off for a minute and they punished you with a great finish.

"Obviously we got a bit more space. When there is one up front you are surrounded by three men and we just thought it was better for me and Jermain to get some more space, so hopefully in games to come we will get to know each other better."

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