Paul Merson: I expect Tottenham to sign this good player to lead attack
By London correspondent Tony Hughes
Paul Merson has tipped Tottenham to finally sign Sadio Berahino in the forthcoming transfer window.
Spurs are ready to pay around £22million to land the West Brom forward and end one of the longest-running transfer sagas in English football.
The north Londoners have long coveted a deal for Berahino but a frosty relationship between chairman Daniel Levy and his West Brom counterpart Jeremy Peace scuppered hopes of an agreement last summer and again in January.
There has also been strong interest in the versatile young forward from Newcastle and Stoke, with both clubs closely pursuing him in January and the Magpies tabling a £24million bid.
Stoke manager Mark Hughes has admitted that Spurs may be considered a “more attractive option” for potential targets than the Britannia Stadium.
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Former Arsenal star Merson is convinced that Berahino will end up signing for Spurs in the summer as he seeks a transfer away from West Brom.
Speaking to Sky Sports News on Tuesday night, Merson said: “I don’t think Berahino will be there [at West Brom] next season.
“I think he’ll go to Tottenham if I’m being honest. Tottenham need a centre forward, and I think he ticks the boxes for them. I think he does a job, he’s a good player.”
A Spurs source has told Football Insider that the club are willing to pay around £22million to land the forward in the summer as they target a proven Premier League front man to complement Harry Kane.
Berahino, who has just one year remaining on his Baggies contract, has also made it clear that his heart is set on a move to White Hart Lane.
Berahino was frozen out by West Brom manager Tony Pulis for much of the season but he is now back in the team and showing some of the form that first alerted Spurs to his potential.
However, he has scored just seven goals in all competitions this season, and missed two penalties against Watford on Saturday.
In other Tottenham transfer news, the club are confident of keeping hold of Jan Vertonghen and tying him down to a new deal.