Defoe has 8 England goals and will be one of the favorites to go to South Africa after a blistering start to the Premier League campaign.
“I’ll never forget what happened in 2006,” he told The Sun. “It’s so clear in my mind it still seems like yesterday.
“It was difficult to accept because I had traveled with the squad to Germany and was with the boys in the team hotel.
“I was told I had to go home. It was much harder to take in 2006. Michael Owen and Wayne Rooney had both been struggling with injuries and I was feeling good.
“At the end of the day all managers are different. Eriksson picked his squad and everyone said Theo was a strange decision.
“But you can’t blame Theo for that. He is a great talent and is showing that now. I suppose what happened in 2006 made me a stronger person.
“And I want to make sure I’m in the squad this time around.”