Skip to main content

Defoe: Redknapp told me not to bother with a medical... "Just score goals"

Jermain Defoe, Harry Redknapp

Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe has revealed Harry Redknapp was once so keen to sign him that he told the striker he wouldn’t even need to pass a medical.

The striker has enjoyed some of the most prolific periods of his career under Redknapp during spells at West Ham, Tottenham (twice) and Portsmouth.

“He always used to phone me and say ‘JD, just come and score goals, you don't need to do a medical, just come and score,'" Defoe revealed in the new FourFourTwo Films documentary: The Art of Goalscoring (below). "I love him... I still message him now."

Redknapp also offered insight into the close bond between the pair by revealing how he jokingly dismissed the striker’s request for a goal bonus during contract negotiations for his move to Portsmouth in 2008.

“I remember Jermain’s mum when we were in discussions to take him to Portsmouth," said the former Spurs boss. "She was in the room with the agent, the chairman Milan Mandaric and chief executive Peter Storrie. Peter came out and said ‘Harry we’re not getting anywhere here, can you come and help?’

“She was a lovely lady but she said, ‘We want a goal bonus’. I said, ‘What do you think we’re paying him £50,000 a week for – to miss them?’”

Watch the full Art of Goalscoring film below... and tell us what you think on YouTube