QPR bid for Defoe could see Sunderland swoop for misfit midfielder

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Harry Redknapp’s burning desire to be reunited with former Tottenham and Portsmouth charge Jermain Defoe could see the QPR manager offload midfielder Junior Hoilett in a bid to fund any move for the former England international.

Signed from Blackburn Rovers for £4m back in the summer of 2012, Hoilett may have provided the assist for Bobby Zamora’s decisive goal in last season’s 1-0 play-off final victory over Derby County but the 24-year-old has otherwise failed to establish himself at the club.

And Redknapp could use Sunderland’s reported interest in the midfielder to Rangers’ advantage with the Rs boss desperate to bring in another striker in January but hamstrung by Financial Fair Play restrictions.

Defoe, meanwhile, is thought to be keen on a move away from his current club Toronto, where a change of management and a disappointing first season in the MLS has left the 32-year-old weighing up his options.

The one-time England international netted 11 goals in 19 appearances for the Canadian outfit last season during an otherwise stop-start campaign that saw Defoe also linked with a move to Loftus Road back in January.

QPR could yet face competition to land the experienced forward though, with Newcastle United previously linked with a January move for the striker.

Alan Pardew’s pre-existing relationship with Defoe means the former West Ham boss will be hoping to persuade the striker to help the Magpies, with the Toon in the running for a top 10 finish.

But with a Rangers move offering the Beckton-born striker the chance to return to London on what will most likely be a bumper contract, it could all come down to whether Hoilett is open to the overtures of Sunderland.

The Black Cats could yet be challenged by Stoke City for the Canadian though, with the Potters also on the lookout for a winger and previously linked to the 24-year-old.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for Cardspiel.com alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.