Pulis quotes represent a new stumbling block in Berahino pursuit

Saido Berahino

Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool have long been linked with the West Brom striker.

After West Brom's 7-0 win over Gateshead in the FA Cup, new boss Tony Pulis was very matter of fact in his post-match interview.

"The club has had no offers for Saido Berahino and I've had one day's training with him - and I'm looking forward to working with him,” the new West Brom boss told BBC Sport. “He can score a goal and he's got the balance of a very good player.

“He looks as though he's got the potential to be a good player. If any offers come in I'll get on the phone to the BBC and ask you guys what I should do!”

The 21-year-old, of course, has long been linked with Tottenham and Liverpool, although various reports suggest both clubs are either interested or disinterested by the day.

But Pulis's quotes may represent a new stumbling block for Spurs and the Reds if they do truly intend to pursue Berahino this January.

Indeed, why would the West Brom boss sell one of his prized assets if he has been employed to avoid relegation? Yes, the Baggies could offload Berahino and use the money elsewhere. No new signings, though, are guaranteed of success instead of a striker who is already in amongst the goals (despite dips in form) so far this season.

Pulis, then, might prefer to keep the young striker and, as his club's new manager, he is perfectly within his rights to tell his board to reject any Tottenham or Liverpool bids.

After all, why should a manager who has been given a high wage and instructed to stave off relegation sell one of his goalscorers? Pulis has the leverage to persuade those above him not to entertain bids and, in that way, the Welshman himself could provide a very real stumbling block to both Tottenham, Liverpool or any club pursuing the forward.

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