By Craig Scott

3rd May, 2020 | 11:10am

Exclusive: Pundit raves about 'top' 17-goal striker who was once wanted by Leeds

We’re delighted to welcome former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Leeds United…

Paul Robinson has delivered a glowing verdict of Jermain Defoe after the Rangers striker revealed he was wanted by Leeds United back in January 2004.

Defoe, 37, has recently said in an interview with Sky Sports that he got “a phone call about Leeds when they had all those players there and were doing well” before he eventually opted to join Tottenham.

Ex-Leeds goalkeeper Robinson played alongside Defoe at Spurs and he cannot speak highly enough of the Rangers striker.

“He’s a top, top lad. He’s a top professional and really good guy off the field who never seems to be down or in a bad mood,” Robinson told MOT Leeds News while talking about Defoe’s admission about Leeds. “He’s one of those in the dressing room who always lifts you.

“You have different egos, different personalities, moods and all the rest of it but Jermain was always on the same level. He was always happy, always buzzing and lit up the room whenever he walked in.

“He’s looked after himself well and managed to extend his career.”

Defoe has definitely done well to extend his career because even though he turns 38 later this year, he has managed to score 17 goals in all competitions for Rangers this season even though he hasn’t been Steven Gerrard’s first-choice striker.

It would have been good if Leeds could have signed Defoe back in the day but based on the financial meltdown that happened at Elland Road not long after he joined Spurs, he probably looks back on it and is happy with the decision he made.

But just imagine a front two of Mark Viduka and Defoe.

That would have been a scary combination for defenders to deal with.

In other Leeds United news, Jim White has shared what a Premier League insider has told him about the Government’s stance on restarting the season.