Saido Berahino to Tottenham: West Brom manager Tony Pulis admits striker close to leaving with '15 clubs interested'

The £25m-rated player is set to leave the Baggies

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The Independent Online

Saido Berahino is close to leaving West Bromwich Albion with Tony Pulis claiming that the striker’s head has been turned by a range of interested clubs.

The West Bromwich Albion manager did not identify those clubs individually, but as well as Tottenham Hotspur, there is a suggestion that Manchester United could be interested in the England Under-21s international. Berahino was not in the match-day squad for his club’s 3-2 defeat to Chelsea at the Hawthorns.

Pulis attacked the timing of the transfer window, asking why it did not close when the season began. He said: “Why are we talking about Saido? Because of the transfer window. It's absolutely ridiculous. For it to be going through the start of the season is ridiculous. We should be talking about this game. This wouldn't be an issue, a problem.

“Saido is a great lad. It happens where it [the window] can be disruptive, and it has been disruptive. I had a good chat with him [on Saturday] and he's fine, no problems, but it's the transfer window. Why can't we have a system where it finishes before the start of the season?”

 

He added: “He's a young lad who needs to be protected. There's loads of stuff going on in his mind and there are loads of clubs, not one but 15, saying things and doing things.”

West Brom want £s25m for the player and have rejected Spurs’ interest in him so far. The club are prepared to take that interest further in spite of the statement from West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace last week which announced that the player was not for sale, while conceding that they could never say “never”.

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Tony Pulis has revealed Berahino has many suitors

Jose Mourinho said that appealing John Terry’s red card would be “waste of time” based on recent experience. The Chelsea captain was sent off for denying an obvious goalscoring opportunity to Salomon Rondon, a decision that Tony Pulis described as “harsh”.

“Normally, it [appeals] are a waste of time for us,” Mourinho said. “I think we should [appeal], but normally it's a waste of time. [Nemanja] Matic against Burnley last year, Diego Costa against Liverpool, [Thibaut] Courtois [for his red card against Swansea] ... it's a waste of time.”

He said he was not concerned by three red cards in the last five games for his team, stretching back to last season and Cesc Fabregas’ dismissal against West Brom. “I have to do what's in my hands, which is to train,” he said. “We have to train 11 against 10. We have to do it. We did it a couple of times in Canada [on pre-season], and we have to do more. Ten men when you are winning. Ten men when you are losing. Ten men chasing a result. Ten men defending a result.

“The difference between [the West Brom game] and Swansea was exactly that. Against Swansea we had ten and wanted to change the result. [Against West Brom] we wanted to keep the result. It's something we want to do in training.”

He praised the performance of Pedro Rodriguez who scored the first goal and made the second for Diego Costa. “There is always a question mark because how many top players come to England and don't perform immediately? Then people wonder if he's the right player: can he adapt, was he a good or bad buy? There are examples in our club, and in lots of clubs. So very nice for him to come and perform straight away as he did. I did expect it. He had a good pre-season.”

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