Transfer notebook: Oxford hold talks with Jermain Defoe and Chelsea narrow search for left-back

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Jermain Defoe. - PA
Jermain Defoe. - PA

Oxford United have held talks to sign Jermain Defoe until the end of the season.

They are understood to be one of at least four League One clubs – led by Sunderland - attempting to bring in the 39-year-old former England striker who is a free agent after being released by Rangers.

Two of Defoe’s former clubs – Sunderland and Charlton Athletic, where he started his career – are also interested as well as Ipswich Town.

Defoe was let go by Rangers earlier this month having scored 32 goals in 74 appearances for them. Overall, in a career that has also included playing for West Ham United, Tottenham Hotspur and Portsmouth, he has scored 305 goals in 756 games. Defoe also earned 57 caps for England, scoring 20 times.

However, Defoe only played twice this season for Rangers having taken on a player-coach role last summer - although that changed when new manager Giovanni Van Bronckhorst brought in his own coaching staff after he succeeded Steven Gerrard.

It remains to be seen whether Defoe carries on playing or concentrates on trying to develop a career in the media but he is in talks with several clubs.

During an appearance on TalkSport on Wednesday morning Defoe said his “phone is going mad” as he considers his next move.

“When your phone is going mad at 39 it’s a good thing,” he said. “We’ve for a few options. The Sunderland one, that’s out there.

“It’s just about being honest with yourself. I did a full pre-season and I remember doing pre-season and I felt good. I didn’t pick up any niggles, was doing double sessions. I was doing all the things

“I was doing all the things that I’ve always done. Even when the new manager came in, I was doing training and thinking I was sharp.

“I’ve not really played, but I felt sharp. No disrespect to any of the other players in that league in Scotland, but I just felt as though I was playing with the best players, had the best players around me. Playing against full international defenders.

“I felt good and sharp and thought ‘what’s the point in stopping now’ when the plan was to get through the season and see what happens.”

Watford eye Scotland full-back

Watford have joined the race for Scotland Under-21 full-back Calvin Ramsay following the teenager’s breakthrough at Aberdeen.

The 18-year-old has been scouted by Champions League teams and there is interest from Italian club Bologna, who took Aaron Hickey from the Scottish Premiership at the start of last season.

But Watford are also firmly in the race for the teenager and have made enquiries over the £3million rated defender, as they look to bolster Claudio Ranieri’s squad for the second half of the season.

They are in talks over a deal for Bordeaux forward Samuel Kalu in a £2.5million deal following the arrivals of Hassane Kamara, Samir and Edo Kayembe so far in the window.

Chelsea narrow search for left-back cover

Chelsea are looking for left-back cover after the loss of Ben Chilwell for the season with a knee injury, although Layvin Kurzawa is unlikely to be an arrival at Stamford Bridge.

The France international, 29, has been out of favour at Paris Saint-Germain and will be allowed to leave but the European champions are looking at other options first.

 Layvin Kurzawa. - SEBASTIEN NOGIER/EPA-EFE/REX
Layvin Kurzawa. - SEBASTIEN NOGIER/EPA-EFE/REX

Meanwhile at Chelsea, Ronnie Stutter has signed his first pro deal after the England youth international turned 17 this month.

D’Margio Wright-Phillips opens contract talks with Stoke

D’Margio Wright-Phillips is in talks over a new contract at Stoke City after his recent appearances for the first team.

The 20-year-old, who arrived last year from Manchester City, has a deal until the end of the season at the Bet365 Stadium.

Carl Jenkinson moves Down Under

Carl Jenkinson has signed for Australian side Melbourne City on a six-month loan deal from Nottingham Forest.

The former Arsenal full-back, 29, will help City defend their A-League title after his shock deal.

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