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Jermain Defoe extends contract with Sunderland, makes unlikely move to New York Red Bulls less likely

Your move, rumor mill - but hard to see how you keep the Defoe-to-RBNY story going after this.

Stu Forster/Getty Images

The least-plausible New York Red Bulls transfer rumor of the moment was never particularly dependent on the usual player-on-the-move triggers: Jermain Defoe did not appear to be unhappy at Sunderland, or underperforming (his 15 goals in last season's Premier League went a long way to keeping the Black Cats in the top flight), or nearing the end of his contract (he was securely tied to Sunderland until 2018).

Nonetheless, an insistent group of unnamed sources suggested Defoe was on RBNY's summer shopping list and that the player was at least not opposed to living in New York.

Those sources must now consider how to explain away the latest development in Defoe's career: he has extended his contract with Sunderland. Will an extra year on his contract keep the rumor-mongers at bay? Perhaps.

The news of Defoe's contract extension doesn't really make the idea of him moving to RBNY any less credible - it was already lacking any concrete reason to believe in it, now it just has one more reason not to believe in it.

But the smoke of a transfer rumor is rarely generated without the fire of an agent's ambitions. Maybe the contract extension at Sunderland is what those responsible for the risible notion of a Defoe move to RBNY were hoping to achieve. And perhaps, therefore, we have heard the end of this entertaining but implausible rumor.