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Saido Berahino set for return to West Brom starting line-up


Saido Berahino has not started a game for West Brom since October.

Saido Berahino has not started a game for West Brom since October.

Saido Berahino has not started a game for West Brom since October.

Saido Berahino is in line for a recall to plug West Brom's striker gap over Christmas with the Baggies braced for more interest from Tottenham.

The forward has been benched for the last six games and has not started for Albion since October.

Salomon Rondon's red card in Saturday's 2-1 defeat to Bournemouth means the club's £12million record buy is banned for the next three games, starting with the Boxing Day trip to Swansea.

Berahino's form dropped following four rejected summer bids from Tottenham - after which he threatened to go on strike - and he has scored just three goals this season but boss Tony Pulis is prepared to grant him a return.

He said: "We have got a tough Christmas period so the players will be played. Given the way he has trained in the last couple of days, given the opportunity, hopefully he can show what he can do.

"We have two games in three days so we would definitely rotate the squad. We will start with players at Swansea which we won't start with against Newcastle. We will certainly rotate the side."

Albion expect further January interest from Barclays Premier League rivals Spurs but Pulis insisted Berahino, who scored 20 goals last season, must knuckle down if he stays.

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He said: "How long have we got until the window opens? I am going to be talking about the same old, same old, same old all the time. If Tottenham come in and they do the deal, they do the deal.

"If they don't come in Saido has got to get his head down and recognise and realise he has got to work hard, get in our team and start scoring goals again.

"I'm not going to tell Daniel Levy (Tottenham chairman) what to do and I'm not going to tell Jeremy (Peace, West Brom chairman), if he doesn't want to sell, what to do."

Along with Rondon, James McClean is also banned following his straight red against Bournemouth but Claudio Yacob is available after a family bereavement.

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