Jermaine Defoe was “amongst worst trainers” at Bournemouth regardless of longevity within the recreation
Rangers striker Jermaine Defoe has had a great career. After showing up at West Ham, he was loaned to Bournemouth AFC, where he scored 18 goals in 29 games. Of those 18 hits, 10 found the net in back-to-back games, which got the South Coast club fans to chant, “We have Jermaine Defoe – he scored 10 in a row.”
Defoe was perhaps most notable during his first two games at Tottenham Hotspur, where he scored over a century of goals. A successful goalscorer in Portsmouth, he formed a great partnership with Peter Crouch after leaving White Hart Lane. Defoe also played very well in Sunderland and Toronto before returning to Bournemouth in 2017.
Surprisingly, Defoe’s second outing with the cherries was unsuccessful. In 28 games, spread over three years, he only found the net four times. Steven Gerrard then came over for his former English teammate and brought him to Rangers, where he didn’t make a big impression either.
When Defoe Bournemouth, the club’s manager at the time, left, Eddie Howe praised his professionalism. However, a leading sports scientist for the club from that time has contradicted these comments. Instead, he suggests Defoe show up for his wages while he turned the clock on his career.
The Sports Science Department oversaw all of Bournemouth’s fitness training, from regular beep tests to pre-season conditioning work. Defoe was often one of the poorest performers in this regard, with below-average distances on the training ground and few high-intensity runs. Some may think that is understandable given he was in his late 30s, but the sports scientist in question believes that, despite being a player with a wonderful career, Defoe went through applications for a Premier League wage before leaving .
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Sports science and nutrition have become very important in modern games. The staff in this area led all pre-season training under Eddie Howe’s guidance, including ball work until the coaches wanted to work through the technical and tactical aspects of the game. Indeed, modern fitness methods tend to focus on short, high-intensity runs and on football-related fitness acquired through working with the ball. Gone are the days of 12-mile runs along the streets or endless laps of the pitch.
Jermaine Defoe is a long way off at Rangers these days. He made only seven league appearances for the Scottish club last season, but the fact that he’s still in the game at the age of 38 suggests he needs to do something right regardless of whether his stats stack up or not.