By Matt Bullin

TalkSport pundit Perry Groves has claimed that Jermain Defoe would have no issues joining Newcastle next season.

Sunderland’s relegation to the Championship was confirmed on Sunday and Defoe has been a shining light in their disappointing season.

The 34-year-old has scored 14 goals in 34 Premier League appearances this season, and is the Black Cats’ top scorer.

The 56-time England international’s contract at the Stadium of Light is  fast running out and he can leave on a free transfer this summer if he does not agree a new deal.

According to the Gambling Times West Ham are interested in acquiring Defoe’s services, and the Sun claim that Newcastle have also joined the race.

Since signing from FC Toronto in 2014 he has become a clear fan favourite, but Groves believes he would not have any qualms with a move to the Toon.

Speaking on TalkSport, as quoted by the Chronicle Live, Groves said: “I know they say ‘Sunderland to Newcastle, would Jermain Defoe go? His loyalty is to Sunderland…’ [I think] he’d go in a heartbeat.

“Imagine Jermain Defoe going to Newcastle, wearing the number nine shirt and scoring them 15-20 goals which guarantees them staying up.”

A move to Newcastle would ensure Premier League football for another season for Defoe, after they secured promotion with a 4-1 thrashing of Preston last week.

Groves played 155 league games for Arsenal during a eight year spell at the club, and he was part of two Division One sides.

In other Newcastle news, here is why Jordan Pickford would never sign for Newcastle.

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