Liverpool icon John Barnes says Tottenham striker Jermain Defoe must go to the World Cup.

Barnes has backed Defoe, 27, to shine in South Africa as he believes the Tottenham striker is the best natural goalscorer England have - ahead of even Manchester United star Wayne Rooney.

"I love Defoe and I think he is the best natural finisher England have, better even than Wayne Rooney," said Barnes of a player who has scored just twice in his last 13 games for club and country.

"Rooney is an all-round player, he plays wide, he can drop short, whereas as a No.9 Jermain is the one you know will put the ball in the back of the net."