West Bromwich Albion striker Saido Berahino could yet secure a move away from the club and to a top-four team if he can build on his fine display in the win over Crystal Palace. Berahino has long been linked with a move to Tottenham Hotspur among others but produced his best performance since handing in a transfer request in the 3-2 win over Alan Pardew's team at The Hawthorns.
Berahino volleyed home Stephane Sessegnon's cross to score his first Premier League goal of 2016 and played a part in Craig Gardner's opener during a thrilling first half which also saw Craig Dawson head home to help give the hosts a three-goal half-time lead. Connor Wickham netted a double after the break but Tony Pulis' men held on to go above The Eagles and all-but put an end to any lingering relegation concerns.
The game marked the first since Berahino apologised for criticising West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace on Twitter, after the 22-year-old had several attempts to move to Tottenham blocked after he handed in a transfer request. Berahino stayed at the club in January despite Newcastle United launching a reported £24m move for the forward, according to The Mirror.
However, Pulis expects interest from the likes of Tottenham to be reignited in the next transfer window should Berahino capture some consistency between now and the end of the campaign. He had not scored a league goal since October before the strike against Palace and had been accused of putting on weight by his manager but now is eyeing a resurgence in the closing weeks of the season.
"Saido has a God-given gift and he should squeeze the pips out of it and have a great, great career," said Pulis, who has previously attempted to warn off interest from Tottenham, according to The Indpendent. "Everything will follow, whether it is now, tomorrow or the next day. If he is playing well he will get recognition and if he wants he will play for a top-four team, which is his ambition.
"He wants the chance to show how good he is, playing in a top-four team. That's what drives him and you can't take that away from the boy, but he has got to do it in a proper way. He is not a bad lad but he speaks to a lot of people and he gets pushed and pulled from pillar to post at times. But his mind is clear now, he is set on his football again and he's a good player when that happens."