Defoe rejoins England squad

Jermain Defoe is back with the England squad after his bereavement

Jermain Defoe is back with the England squad after his bereavement

First published in National Sport © by

Jermain Defoe has returned to the England squad following the death of his father.

The Tottenham striker went back home on Thursday morning after hearing the sad news.

However, he was back in the team hotel on Saturday morning and is expected to take part in a closed-doors training session as England prepare for Monday's Group D opener against France in Donetsk.

Manager Roy Hodgson will be glad to have Defoe back in the fold.

Although the 29-year-old is not expected to start against the French, he offers a useful goalscoring option from the bench.

With Ashley Young virtually certain to fill the position just behind a central striker in the absence of suspended frontman Wayne Rooney, Andy Carroll and Danny Welbeck are vying for the other forward berth.

Carroll was paired with Young during Friday's public training session.

However, the Liverpool forward was also part of the FA visit to Auschwitz in the afternoon, which - fitness permitting - seemed to be made up of players who were not going to start on Monday.

Welbeck did make a big impression against Belgium on Saturday, when he scored the only goal, and it would be no surprise if he got the nod to start his first competitive game.

Hodgson does have some concerns though, with Chelsea duo John Terry and Ashley Cole both said to be nursing muscular problems.

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