Glenn: J Will Make Seniors

Glenn Roeder is backing Jermain Defoe to shoot himself into the full England squad while with West Ham - and is full of praise for the attitude he has been showing.

Jermain is in under-21 action on Tuesday evening at Upton Park against Croatia, but Glenn feels it will only be a matter of time before he breaks through into Sven-Goran Eriksson's senior squad.

Glenn is keen to see if he can keep up his early season form in the first international fixture of the campaign, and jokes: "I'm looking forward to the game and the fact that it is at Upton Park makes it an easy one to get to!

"I have been looking at this game for a while now, and, though I am certainly not picking David Platt's team for him, I would expect Jermain to be starting.

"The way he talks about Jermain it seems that way, and the rumours are Francis Jeffers will be starting with him.

"Those two as a front pairing at under-21 level, if they are provided with the right service, should cause Croatia a lot of problems.

"Jermain is an integral part of David Platt's plans and I am sure that, when he reports back to Sven - though he comes to the under-21 games anyway and will see with his own eyes - he will confirm what a good trainer Jermain is.

"It is always important for coaches, as well as working with good players, to work with people with a good attitude as well - and Jermain has an excellent attitude in his work and his training Monday to Friday.

"That shows in his play, it goes without saying, and on Saturday he was our most dangerous goal threat.

"He carved out two or three chances for himself with that twisting and turning in and around the penalty box that everyone knows is one of the strengths of his game.

"I hope we see that tonight at Upton Park, and what is key is that he gets the service in to feet or slipped down the sides to spin into the grass behind, and scoring goals at under-21 level is not a problem for him."

But Glenn is confident that he will be elevated to senior status eventually, and he adds: "By playing well for us - which I am sure he is going to do this year - he will eventually get lifted into the full squad.

"And the important thing about getting into the full squad is that the England manager sees that you are playing every week.

"If you are not it makes it more difficult to be in the squad."

Jermain so nearly made it three scoring games on the trot against Sheffield United and Glenn says: "It was finer than the width of the post because from where I was sitting it was going in off the post, so we are talking fractions of an inch from 1-0 to the face of the post and out.

"It is a shame that David Connolly couldn't adjust to knock it back into an empty net, but the ball did come back at a difficult angle.

"As always, and managers say it every week, a goal does change a game, however it is going.

"Even if you are under huge pressure, which we weren't at the time, if you break away and score to get that first goal it changes the nature of the game.

"I believe Sheffield United are going to be right there at the top of the first division all year, and they have come and shown us an awful lot of respect and played a system that made it hard to play our game.

"They pushed two wide players up against our full backs and that stops your full backs playing out from the back where most good attacks start from.

"If that ball had gone in I don't think Neil Warnock would have carried on with one up front. I think he would have pulled Jack Lester inside and gone like for like, reverting to a 4-4-2.

"But it didn't happen and you have to accept that. No one, though, could question the amount of effort we put into the game, and I thought Robert Lee epitomised that - but we couldn't get that first goal.

"I have to say that defensively we looked very sound, both in open play and from set plays.

"We would admit that the latter has been one of our weaknesses but on Saturday, against a strong Sheffield United team in terms of set plays and balls into the penalty area - young Tonge delivers a wonderful ball into the box - we coped well.

"David James had a relatively quiet afternoon; it's just that we couldn't get the breakthrough at the other end."