Belfast Telegraph

Anichebe: Berahino must keep focus

Victor Anichebe has warned West Brom team-mate Saido Berahino to ignore the hype surrounding his stellar season.

Berahino could make his England debut in their friendly with Scotland at Celtic Park on Tuesday but Anichebe believes his fellow Hawthorns striker could be quickly shot down if his performance levels drop.

Anichebe burst onto the scene at Everton in 2006, scoring his first Toffees goal against the Baggies in his third game, and knows the scrutiny young stars come under.

He said: "I told him about that. I came through with James Vaughan, who was a big deal, as it always is when a young guy comes through.

"It is very difficult and you can get caught up in the hype but as long as you have good people around you then you should be okay.

"As much as they're building him up now, if he starts playing badly people will bring him down again.

"As soon as you don't have the level of performances you should have you will find it difficult, but he's a good kid and is positive and really believes in himself so I'm sure he'll continue to fulfil his potential.

"I always sing his praises because he's a quality player and he will be a quality player for years to come if he can keep his head right.

"He is young and there is a lot of pressure and expectation on him right now, but as long as he can keep doing exactly what he's been doing, not listen too much to the media and things on the outside and keep his feet on the ground, he will be fine."

Berahino has eight goals this season and is the top-scoring Englishman in the Barclays Premier League.

He has helped the England Under-21s reach next year's European Championships and Anichebe believes the 21-year-old, who was an unused substitute in Saturday's 3-1 Euro 2016 qualifying win over Slovenia, will revel in being with the senior side.

"I think anyone would enjoy playing with the quality of players England have," said the 26-year-old.

"They have a lot of quality players and Saido has only just had his first call-up, so we need to take it easy.

"Just the fact he's been called up is an achievement in itself.

"It's a great achievement for the club and for Saido and his family.

"We're just happy he's involved. If he plays I'm sure he'll do well and the media and everyone else just need to keep him grounded."

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