Saido Berahino 'lucky' to be on West Brom bench, says Tony Pulis

Saido Berahino
Berahino has scored 22 goals in 84 appearances for West Brom

West Bromwich Albion boss Tony Pulis said striker Saido Berahino was lucky to be on the substitutes' bench for Monday's 1-0 win over Newcastle United.

Pulis hinted at behind-the-scenes issues over Berahino, who has not started a game since 31 October.

Before the match, Pulis said: "He's lucky to be on the bench, never mind starting. He's a smashing kid but lets himself down at times."

Berahino, 22, threatened to strike this summer after rejected transfer bids.

Tottenham made two bids on 1 September - transfer deadline day - and in the wake of Albion's refusal to let him leave the striker has so far had a disappointing season, scoring just three goals.

The England Under-21 international's 70th-minute appearance against the Magpies was his eighth in a row as a substitute, although afterwards Pulis denied there was a rift between him and his player.

Saido Berahino
Berahino made his frustration public when tweeting on transfer deadline day

"I always want the team to be a team, the supporters, the players, the management side, the directors, everyone together," said the Welshman after his side's first win in six league games.

"Sometimes Saido does things that break away from that. He's been told, but he's been fine as you've seen - his reaction coming on was absolutely fantastic.

"He worked his socks off and he's fine - no problems. At times you have to make him understand it's about the group and about the team.

"You've got to look and understand that Saido's had almost five months where he's not prepared himself or got himself ready and prepared to play in the team."

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