Jermain Defoe confident more goals will come to steer Sunderland to safety
Published 14/01/2016 | 13:06
Jermain Defoe has promised to keep up the scoring habit to steer Sunderland away from relegation danger.
Defoe's treble at Swansea on Wednesday night secured a precious 4-2 victory for Sunderland over Barclays Premier League relegation rivals and took the Black Cats to within a point of safety.
The 33-year-old veteran has now scored nine times in 13 league starts this season and his manager Sam Allardyce feels Defoe's goals will prove the difference to Sunderland winning their survival battle.
"I always visualise before the game that I am going to score," Defoe said while holding the match ball after his seventh hat-trick in English football.
"If you get the chances you have to put them away.
"I have always said when you are scoring goals for some reason they just seem to come and come and come. That is the way it is going at the minute and hopefully it will continue.
"But we have players who can score goals, not only me but Jermain Lens, Jonno (Adam Johnson) and Fabio (Borini).
"I t is important we are solid and the front four get the chances to score."
Defoe has now scored five times in two games with back-to-backs league wins taking Sunderland above neighbours Newcastle on goal difference and within a point of Swansea in 17th place.
And the former England striker believes the Black Cats will benefit from Allardyce's previous experience of winning relegation battles.
"The manager has always been calm," Defoe said.
"He came in the first day and said I will give you the basis how to win games and then you have to go out there and do it.
"It is as simple as that. Training is always good with a game-plan and the squad is confident at the minute.
"I suppose being in a position like this you know you have to raise your game, you give a bit more.
"Maybe some of the other teams might not be used to it but we can only speak for ourselves.
"It is a lot of pressure but the rewards are big to stay in the Premier League, we will just keep fighting towards the end."
Sunderland's mini-recovery is in sharp contrast to that of a Swansea side who have won only two of their last 12 matches.
There was an upturn in performances following Garry Monk's dismissal in December, but interim manager Alan Curtis has won just one of his six league games in charge and only bottom club Aston Villa have scored fewer goals than Swansea.
"It is going to be a slog between now and the end of the season," Curtis said.
"That would have been the case even if we had won this game."
On the prospect of signing players in the January transfer window, especially a new striker, Curtis added: "All I can say is that I know there is a lot of work going on.
"We have got £12million for Jonjo Shelvey and with that money we will have to be seen to bring someone in."