It seems that West Brom striker Saido Berahino will be involved in transfer deadline day once again, as according to Sky Sports, Newcastle and Stoke are looking to sign the temperamental striker before the winter transfer window shuts at 11PM.
Berahino was infamously involved in a failed move to Tottenham on deadline day of the summer transfer window.
The Baggies were reported to have rejected three bids from Spurs and the player threw his toys out of the pram, taking to social media to state he would never play for the Midlands club while Jeremy Peace was still chairman.
Out of favour
Ironically, Berahino has struggled to get on the pitch since that infamous outburst on social media. The highly-rated striker scored a brace against Peterborough in the FA Cup fourth round, but his minutes in the Premier League have been limited since September.
The 22-year-old has not started any of the Baggies last 12 league games, but has made nine substitute appearances, some of which that have been very short.
There is no doubt he is out of favour at the Hawthorns, yet boss Tony Pulis recently admitted he would like to keep the striker at the club. Sky have also claimed that the Baggies have turned down a £21million bid from Newcastle for the striker, which is strange because he does not appear to be a part of Pulis’ plans judging by the amount of minutes he has played of late.
West Brom continues to state that Berahino is not for sale and Pulis has even claimed that the youngster is not fully-fit, but they need him. It seems like a strange situation.
In need of goals
It seems that Newcastle and Stoke are the two teams most likely to sign Berahino. The striker is currently odds of 5/4 to be a Newcastle player when the January transfer window shuts, so the Magpies are definitely favourites to clinch the striker’s signature.
Newcastle have been desperately short of goals this season, having scored just 25 goals in their 23 Premier League games this season. The lack of goals and a poor defensive record has left the side from the north east fighting another relegation battle.
Stoke have ambitions at the other end of the table. The Potters have in fact scored one less than Newcastle this season, but their defence has performed far better than the Magpies’ this season.
Despite their lack of goals Mark Hughes team are still ninth in the table and realistic contenders for a top-six spot this season.
They have some very good technical players in the likes of Bojan, Xherdan Shaqiri, Ibrahim Afellay and Marko Arnautovic, but none are prolific scorers of goals and Potters boss Hughes will know he will need to sign a goalscorer if his side are to go to the next level.
Perfect for Newcastle
Saido Berahino seems like a complicated character. He comes across as confident and maybe slightly arrogant, but that is often a good thing for a top-class player. The striker handled the last transfer deadline day debacle very badly. Let’s just hope there is not a similar situation this time around.
Despite West Brom’s protestations that the striker is not for sale, I do believe they will sell the striker for the right price and that Newcastle could be the perfect destination for Berahino.
Stoke maybe higher in the table, but the 22 year-old seems like a guy that needs to be loved and adored by his boss and the fans to reach his top level of performance. Nowhere like Newcastle is a goalscorer loved more.
The likes of Andy Cole and Alan Shearer are recent examples of strikers who were prolific in front of goal for Newcastle and in turn endeared themselves to the Magpies faithful.
Berahino may not be the sort of traditional number nine that Newcastle fans seem to crave, but he has all the makings of a very good Premier League striker and hero.
In the north east he could become a big hero and gain the attention he seems to need. The youngster would also be given first team football, something he has not had at the Hawthorns in recent months.
A move to Newcastle may not mean a move to a club higher in the table, but it would likely mean a big pay rise, first team football and unending admiration from the Toon Army if he performs well.
Today is set to be a busy one in the transfer market, as clubs at home and abroad attempt to strengthen their squads for the remainder of the campaign.
Berahino could be the biggest mover of deadline day, but there are plenty of other stories set to unfold today, so stay with my colleagues at Soccernews to keep bang in touch with all the latest deadline day moves.
Which club will Saido Berahino be plying his trade after the transfer window shuts?