Name: Saido Berahino
Nationality: (caps): England U-21 (13)
Club: West Bromwich Albion
The West Bromwich Albion frontman has matured this season, with the 21-year-old already bettering last season’s goal tally of five – in 20 appearances in England’s top flight this campaign (16 starts) the England U-21 international has notched eight goals.
What’s the story?
— London24 Sport (@London24Sport) January 5, 2015
The young striker fuelled speculation that he is open to leaving the Hawthorns in this transfer window after refusing to celebrate any of his FOUR goals against Gateshead in the FA Cup on Saturday. However, Berahino has today moved to clear those rumours and insisted he was merely being “professional”.
Is he worth it?
When was the last time an English talent was genuinely ‘worth it’? Adam Lallana moved for a similar fee to the one being touted for Berahino when he joined Liverpool from Southampton in the summer. Following loan spells at Northampton Town, Brentford and Peterborough – a total of 12 goals across all three spells from 32 appearances – Berahino made his breakthrough in the Premier League last season. 13 goals from over 40 appearances doesn’t suggest that Berahino would be the answer to either of Liverpool or Tottenham’s problems – at least not straight away – and when you’re spending that sort of money, you’d expect instant results.
Although, with that being said, some of these finishes against Gateshead suggest he’d be worth every penny:
Who would Berahino replace?
After finally proving to Mauricio Pochettino that he can cut it in the Premier League, Harry Kane has become something of a talisman for Spurs with his importance epitomised in Tottenham’s surprise 5-3 victory of Chelsea. However, the reliance on Kane to lead the line is too heavy with no one knowing the whereabouts of Emmanuel Adebayor and Roberto Soldado failing to adapt to Premier League life.
Liverpool have failed to adapt to life after Luis Suarez, with Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert not even coming close to replacing Suarez’s 31 Premier League goals from last season. In recent weeks, Rodgers has even opted for Raheem Sterling up top instead of the duo showing that there’s certainly room for Berahino at Liverpool – well, until Daniel Sturridge returns, that is.