Redknapp - Defoe won't be sold

Spurs manager confirms his intentions to keep Jermain Defoe

Jermain Defoe: Despite his time on the bench this season, the striker has still scored six goals

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Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has ruled out selling striker Jermain Defoe in the January transfer window.

Defoe has found first-team opportunities hard to come by this season, having not started a Premier League game since the start of October.

His chances have been limited due to the impressive form of Emmanuel Adebayor and Rafael van der Vaart who have scored six goals between them in the last five league outings.

Despite his regular place on the bench, Defoe has still managed to net six goals for Spurs this season with the last two coming as a substitute.

Such is his bad luck, the 29-year-old is unlikely to be fit enough to replace Van der Vaart for Saturday's trip to West Brom, with the Dutchman possibly out with a hamstring problem.

Defoe picked up a slight groin injury after scoring five goals for Tottenham's reserves side against Charlton in midweek.

Fantastic player

Redknapp said: "I wouldn't sell him. He is a fantastic player. In midweek he scored five goals against Charlton. They were incredible finishes.

"He is a top player. He has just been unlucky. Adebayor came in and has done great up front and Rafa is in fantastic form.

"I had a chat with Jermain in the week. Rafa is struggling with a hamstring and Jermain has a tight groin this weekend, but he will get his opportunities when he is fit and I am sure he will take them."

England

Defoe's chances of making the England squad for the Euro 2012 tournament may be fading due to his few starts this season.

He was not picked for Fabio Capello's recent squad that faced Spain and Sweden at Wembley, with strikers Darren Bent, Bobby Zamora, Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge all given the chance.

He has won 46 caps for England, scoring 15 goals, and Redknapp believes there are plenty of reasons why Defoe should be involved.

He added: "I don't pick the squad, that's up to Fabio Capello, but Jermain is a top-class striker so there is no reason why he shouldn't be in the squad.

"He is up there. Rooney is top-class and after that it's a very difficult one. We have four or five strikers and there isn't much to choose between them."