Having arrived to much fanfare as part of a deal that saw the misfiring Jozy Altidore head out the door, back to Major League Soccer with Toronto FC, it’s fair to say that the honeymoon is over for Jermain Defoe and Sunderland.
The 32-year-old was brought in to do what his American predecessor failed to do – score goals – but with the one-time England international without a goal to his name since February and the Black
Cats edging closer to an end-of-season relegation dogfight, something needs to change.
Thank goodness then that a Tyne-Wear Derby with Newcastle United is just around the corner.
After all, almost every Sunderland striker going has scored against the Magpies in recent times – Altidore being the only notable exception.
And with Defoe boosted from 5/1 to 6/1 to score first, here’s a rundown of some of the misfits who have made their mark for the Mackems in this notable fixture.
1. Djibril Cisse – October 2008
The blond bombshell spent a season on loan at the Stadium of Light during which time the former Liverpool forward was able to write his name into Sunderland folklore with the opening goal in a 2-1 home win over the Toon. He moved on to Panathinaikos the following season.
2. Asamoah Gyan – January 2011
One of the stars for Ghana at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Gyan may have angered Sunderland fans after forcing through a move to Al-Ain but he was on hand to save the day with a last gasp equaliser against Newcastle, who had previously led through Kevin Nolan.
3. Nicklas Bendtner – March 2012
The not-so-great Dane broke the deadlock when the two teams met in a fiery encounter at St James’ Park, scoring from the spot to give Sunderland the first-half lead. On loan with the Black Cats that season, Bendtner returned to Arsenal and is currently warming the bench at Wolfsburg.
4. Stephen Fletcher – October 2013
Scotland’s finest may have only found the net three times in the Premier League last season, but he bought himself a little more patience from the Mackems massive with the opener in a 2-1 victory a couple of months into the campaign. We are pretty sure that has worn thin now.
5. Fabio Borini – February 2014
The Italian may not find the net much for Liverpool these days, but he scored home and away against Newcastle while on loan at Sunderland last season, netting the first goal in a comprehensive 3-0 away triumph over the Toon last term.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £25 in free bets.