Despite van Gaal continuing to claim that he doesn’t need another striker, transfer rumours linking strikers to a move to the red half of Manchester keep rolling through the press.
One of the latest reported targets is West Bromwich Albion’s Saido Berahino. The 22 year old England international has been linked with a move to Spurs throughout the summer, but following United’s 0-0 draw last weekend, speculators now claim that United have joined the chase for the Baggies’ front man.
Yesterday, Berahino handed West Brom a written transfer request, which was rejected by the club. This was despite him being left out of the whole squad that lost 3-2 to Chelsea on Sunday.
Saido was given a lot of credit for West Brom’s successful season last year, scoring 20 goals and assisting 6. He has played at each England youth level from U16 to U21 and received his first England call up last year. He is yet to score this season.
Berahino hails from Burundi’s capital city, Bujumbura. At age 10 he fled the war torn African nation to seek asylum in England, which he was granted. Only speaking French he thought he would struggle to fit into society but he claims that football helped him integrate into his new home, Berahino once stated:
“Playing football made it easier for me to settle in and learn the language and I’m lucky I had the talent to get where I am.”
West Brom have recently rejected a £15 million bid that would have taken the talented youngster to White Hart Lane but, Tony Pulis’ pre-match explanation of Berahino’s exclusion hinted at his imminent departure.
The United deal to bring Berahino to Old Trafford however is said to be money plus Jonny Evans. Not only would this deal bring United a striker but would also get rid of one of their lesser first team players.
Unfortunately for Manchester United, most of the top strikers available in this window (Harry Kane, Alexandre Lacazette, Mauro Icardi and Saido Berahino) are coming off of their break through seasons. This leaves a degree of uncertainty as to how well they will perform in this season. They could either flourish once again or suffer from some second-season-syndrome.
So there is a certain amount of risk associated with buying any of these talented young strikers.