Toronto FC will not sell English striker Jermain Defoe before the transfer window closes Monday, club executive Tim Leiweke confirmed.
General manager Tim Bezbatchenko told reporters Sunday that Defoe had drawn interest from clubs abroad, with Premier League sides QPR, West Ham and Leicester City linked to the England international. But Leiweke, the chief of TFC parent company Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, has said Defoe is staying put.
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"Obviously the bids that were most intense were for Jermain Defoe," Leiweke told the Toronto Sun. "We're not interested in him going anywhere."
Although Toronto fired coach Ryan Nelsen on Sunday, the club at 9-9-6 is tied for third in the East with fewer games played than any other team in the conference.
"There were three different clubs that approached us," Leiweke said. "We want to make the playoffs. We'll get through this."