Stoke City is continuing its push to sign Saido Berahino.
Speaking to Sky Sports on Tuesday from their Clayton Wood training ground, Stoke’s manager Mark Hughes confirmed that the club has had several bids turned down by West Bromwich Albion for the 22-year-old striker.
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It is believed West Brom want in excess of $21 million for the Burundi-born England U-21 international.
Berahino has just one year left on his current contract and has turned down an offer of a new four-year deal at West Brom. Berhaino previously fell out with chairman Jeremy Peace after a potential move to Tottenham Hotspur broke down and his form on the pitch has struggled since with four goals in 28 PL outings last season.
Here’s what Hughes had to say about the talented young striker:
“It is fair to say we have put bids in,” Hughes said. “As we stand those haven’t been accepted yet but we are still hopeful on that one.”
Hughes then brushed off speculation about another striker, Robin Van Persie, joining the Potters and simply said “we are looking to address key areas of the field we can improve on and if those players become available then we are interested.”
It is clear then that Stoke wants to add a new striker or two this summer.
The Potters only scored 41 times in 38 Premier League games last season which was the sixth-lowest total in the league.
With merucial attacking talents such as Bojan Krkic, Xherdan Shaqiri and Marko Arnautovic, Hughes needs a predatory forward in the box who can bury chances. Arnautovic was Stoke’s top scorer last season with 11 goals but the Austrian prefers to play in an attacking midfield role rather than as a lone central striker as he was forced to do for most of last season.
Arnautovic’s contract situation still isn’t sorted and he only has one year remaining, while Mame Diouf, Joselu and Peter Crouch are Stoke’s other forward options but they combined for just nine PL goals total last season.
When Berhaino is on form and focused he is certainly the type of predatory forward Stoke is missing.