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Sports News of Sunday, 4 September 2022


How I felt when Aribo, Bassey started to call me 'Uncle' - Ex-England star

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Former Three Lions forward, Jermaine Defoe spent the final part of his illustrious career at the Ibrox and played with young Nigerian players, Joe Aribo and Calvin Bassey

Defoe revealed in an article on The Players Tribune that he felt respected and honoured to see younger players including Aribo and Bassey refer to him as “Uncle”.

He said he also felt like his career had come full circle despite the love that came with their tag while he also realised there were people now looking up to him.

“Thank God we did. Leaving that club without adding your name to the winners’ list in the tunnel is unthinkable. I still spend a lot of time in Glasgow. Can you imagine trying to go to a supermarket or a petrol station ever again?? Nah … forget about it haha!,” he wrote about his time at Rangers.

“But as well as winning that title and falling in love with the club and the city, something that really stuck with me from Rangers was when a lot of the younger lads — Joe Aribo, Calvin Bassey, Glen Kamara — started calling me “Uncle.”

“It’s such a sign of love and respect, and made me want to run through a brick wall for them, but it also made me feel like my career had come full circle.

“You start out as a young kid, dreaming and making mistakes and looking up to the senior players around you, and then, all of a sudden, you’re the one people are looking up to.

“The experienced head.

“The “Uncle,” he said.

While Defoe has retired, Aribo and Bassey have changed clubs and are in the Premier League and Eredivisie respectively.