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Seemingly coming out of nowhere into the limelight, Saido Berahino has took to life in the Premier League pretty seamlessly – his immaculate technique to finish from what seems like any angle and his movement in the final 3rd is a joy to watch, especially as a player heavily involved in the England set up, representing his country at every level from under 16’s to under 21’s. However, the 21 year old has a lot to learn.
A start in the Capital One Cup against Newport County is what seemed to perk up the nose of the Albion faithful in 2013, scoring a hat trick to send them to the next round of the Cup with no doubts in the mind of the fans that they had secured a top talent within their ranks. A few months later he started his Premier League goal collection with a goal at Old Trafford which saw West Brom win 2-1 that day – a good way to introduce yourself to potential Premier League suitors at the Theatre of Dreams.
It hasn’t come until the current season of 2014-15 where he has excelled and showed the real ability that he has at his disposal, very much a striker that hasn’t been seen within the team sheet at West Brom in their long history – an embodiment of the modern day footballer. With 10 goals to his name already this season, it shows at 21 his game isn’t perfect and under the right management he can improve. It seems that the lethal partnership new manager Tony Pulis is trying to create also, is coming to fruition with both Brown Ideye getting among the goals and Berahino having everlasting positive influence alongside him.
However, with outstanding quality in the Premier League at a club the size of West Brom – vultures are always going to be swooping round. Rumours were rifle in the January transfer market that Berahino would be seeking a move elsewhere with many interested parties trying to seize one of England’s best new talents to come out of the academy system in recent years, but with criminal prosecutions of drink driving in the early hours of the morning, it seems like some big clubs maybe getting cold feet.
Berahino’s game is good, so good almost its strange to see him associated with the England set up with the stereotype looming around the country saying we can’t develop technically proficient players. However, it seems like the player himself is getting in the way of his own development, with strange media appearances after games, for example against Gateshead in the FA Cup, not celebrating any of the goals he scored, and not receiving permission from West Brom to do an off the cuff interview with Sky Sports which has seemed to invoke anger from everyone at the club. It is without a doubt also, that arguments with senior team mates and former managers has gone so far of defining the players character as somewhat as a controversial one, which could see it have a detrimental effect the further his career goes on.
Berahino has the ability to lead the line for England in his prime, I believe he could be that good In the future. His pace, power, intelligence on the pitch and superior technical ability speak for itself and without a shadow of a doubt has many scouts across the globe watching his progress.
He deserves all the opportunities in football to develop to the highest level but his personality and attitude seems to be getting in the way. Hopefully, a new club can curb that before we lose another great English player.
Written by James Clark
Follow James on Twitter @JamesMRClark
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