Aston Villa's Gabby Agbonlahor praises West Brom striker Saido Berahino

Saido Berahino

Aston Villa's Gabby Agbonlahor has warned his side of the danger posed by West Bromwich Albion striker Saido Berahino ahead of Saturday's trip to the Hawthorns.

Aston Villa’s Gabby Agbonlahor has praised West Bromwich Albion striker Saido Berahino ahead of Saturday afternoon’s Midlands derby at the Hawthorns.

Berahino, 21, got off to a fantastic star to this season, netting eight goals in his first nine Premier League games to attract reported interest from the likes of Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, as well as earn a first call-up to the senior England squad.

He has since struggled to maintain that form, however, having been dropped for last weekend’s trip to Hull after failing to score for five matches, but Agbonlahor still believes that the Baggie front man will pose Villa’s defence serious problems when the two sides meet.

"He's been the star player for West Brom,” the claret and blue stalwart told the club’s official website. “I have seen him play a few times - he's a great player, no question.

"He's a dangerous striker. He's quick and has an eye for goal. You get in the England squad on merit and that's what he has done. Credit to him.

"It's nice to see him get a chance for England."

Having come up through the Villa ranks to make his first-team debut in 2006, Agbonlahor has experienced his fair share of derbies since, and the Birmingham-native admits that there will be an extra edge to the coming game against their local rivals.

“Derby games are definitely special, special games,” he said. "They are passionate matches and you want to win.

"The last few seasons have produced some crazy games. There have been plenty of goals. Two seasons ago we went two up at the Hawthorns and they got it back to two-all. It was the opposite last time out.

"We know it's going to be tough but we will be giving 100%, like we have all season. Fingers crossed, we will get the result.

"West Brom have a lot of good players in their team and they are a good team. We will have to be on our game and hopefully with the great away support we will have in the game, we can go on and get the three points."

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch