Speculation continues to be rife that Newcastle are challenging Tottenham for the signature of Saido Berahino.

Spurs ended up in a war of words with West Brom after failing to sign the striker in the summer, with the player ending up going in the huff and claiming he would never play for the Baggies again.

Whilst there have been widespread reports in recent days that Mike Ashley is prepared to make Berahino, Newcastle’s biggest ever signing with a transfer fee in the region of £20m or so.

Added to this, Tony Pulis hasn’t given the 22 year old forward a Premier League start in the last 12 weeks.

Yet despite this, the West Brom manager last night still managed to keep a straight face when he claimed that he still wants to keep Saido Berhaino if he can…

With these kind of stand-offs, it is surely only a matter of time before a deal is done.

West Brom could surely use the £20m or so on players that Tony Pulis DOES want to play, whilst Berahino himself is just wasting his time at the minute.

Turning 23 before the start of next season, the striker surely held out hope of being included in England’s Euros squad this coming summer.

Last season Berahino scored 20 goals in all competitions and when it comes to English players, only Harry Kane & Charlie Austin scored more goals in the Premier League. Since then, Berahino’s England chances have gone more the Charlie Austin route than the Harry Kane one.

West Brom moved into round four of the FA Cup last night and Berahino was expected to play against Bristol City but was claimed to have ‘a bug’ by Tony Pulis.

With only 12 days until the January Transfer Window closes, it looks a knocking bet that Berahino will leave West Brom but is Mike Ashley and Newcastle United’s interest genuine?

Asked about the Berahino transfer situation on Tuesday night, Tony Pulis did at least admit one thing that might be holding up any move, the West Brom boss declaring ‘The first thing to say is that the valuation will be determined’ by his chairman.

Having seen figures such as £14m put against the likes of Andros Townsend who has achieved nothing, little wonder that West Brom will be expecting big money for a 22 year old who has already scored 22 Premier League goals in only 51 starts (plus sub appearances).

Tony Pulis:

“The first thing to say is that the valuation will be determined by the (West Brom) chairman.

“I was going to play Saido (Berahino) tonight but he has not been well.

“He has picked up a bug that (Rickie) Lambert and a few other players have had over the last few weeks, so we have given him a miss.

“But we want to keep Saido if we can.”