West Bromwich Albion boss Tony Pulis has accused Saido Berahino of wasting "three or four months" of his career. The 22-year-old star came close to leaving The Hawthorns during the summer transfer window and pledged he would never play for the Midlands club again after his proposed moved to Tottenham Hotspur collapsed.
Since then, he has made a quiet return to first-team action under Pulis. But the outspoken forward is once again being linked with a move away from the club in the last few days of the January transfer window.
"It's been dreadful to have an outstanding player who has dropped off because of circumstances," Pulis said of the West Brom star, according to the BBC. "It has not helped us at all.
"If he's still here [after January], he's got to start realising that this is affecting everybody. He's got to get back to what he was. Saido has to realise he is a footballer. In my opinion, he has wasted three or four months and he can't afford to waste any more time."
Berahino has made 18 league appearances for West Brom this season, but Pulis does not think he has scaled the heights of the last campaign. "I'm not picking him because he's not been anywhere near what he was last year," said Pulis.
"You have to make him understand that we are playing at the top of our profession and every week you have to be at the top of your form. Unfortunately, that hasn't been Saido, mentally or physically."
Despite the ongoing problems, Pulis is a fan of the West Brom youngster. However, he thinks people around him are causing the striker — who has been linked with moves to Tottenham and Chelsea — to make bad decisions.
"I like the kid, I spend a lot of time with the kid but my biggest worry with him is that he has so many other people out there who influence him," the West Brom boss said.