Defoe available for France opener

Jermain Defoe will return to the England squad in time for their Euro 2012 opener against France on Monday.


Defoe returned to England from the team training camp in Poland following the passing of his father, though the FA had confirmed that the Spurs forward would return to the set-up “in due course”.

No replacement had been named in his absence, and despite expectations that Defoe would not return until after the France fixture to open up England’s Group D campaign, it has been revealed that he will rejoin his team-mates on Saturday.

Though he will be available for selection, he is highly unlikely to start the game in place of the suspended Wayne Rooney due to concerns that he has missed key training sessions during his compassionate leave.

Despite having 47 caps and 15 international goals to his name, Defoe was named as a substitute for both of England’s warm-up friendlies against Norway and Belgium, with Andy Carroll and Danny Welbeck respectively starting as a lone striker with Ashley Young in support.