West Brom manager Tony Pulis says the future of Saido Berahino should be decided within the next 48 hours.
The striker was left out of the starting line-up for Sunday’s 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough at The Hawthorns, with Pulis saying the 23-year-old needed “to clear his head” as talk again grows that he will leave the club before Wednesday’s transfer deadline.
Berahino cut a frustrated figure in the dugout and was only brought on with 18 minutes to play – to a smattering of boos from the home fans – after fellow substitute Jonathan Leko was forced off with an injury.
And Pulis hopes that his future his resolved swiftly so that the club can begin to look forward.
When asked if Berahino would stay, Pulis told Sky Sports: “We’ll see in the next 48 hours, I think.”
Pulis hopes to add up to five more signings in the remaining few days of the transfer window as he feels his thin squad is stretched to the maximum at present.
“I thought we were good for the first 25 minutes and the game sort of drifted away for us,” he said after Sunday’s dour stalemate. “We are trying our socks off as a club to get players who in can make the difference.
“I was disappointed Jon came on and had to come off again, it affected us – he is a talented boy. But I’m pleased.
“This group of lads have worked really hard since I’ve been here but we need to bring people in to give us a lift. I’d rather talk to the other managers and then I’ll talk about it with you guys.
“The best thing is to do your business without people knowing. I’d rather talk to managers at other clubs and get it done, and then we can talk about it.
“I’ve said we need five players to come in for the group because there’s players here we have to move on who aren’t going to play here. There’s 14 or 15 players who were here two years ago when we were struggling near the bottom who are fantastic and work so hard. But we need to freshen up.”