And ex-Everton man acts as mentor to young team-mate
VICTOR Anichebe has labelled team-mate Saido Berahino as the new Jermain Defoe ahead of tomorrow's home clash with Norwich City (ko 3pm).
The former Everton man has been impressed by the impact the Albion Academy product has made since joining forces with him in on transfer deadline day.
And he has likened him to 31-year-old Tottenham and England striker Defoe, who boasts an outstanding Barclays Premier League record of 123 goals in 377 appearances.
“Saido’s a really good player and a great finisher,” said Anichebe.
“He’s a young player with a lot of confidence and he’s come into a league where nobody really knows him.
“And he just enjoys it. It’s nice to see someone that just comes in every day and enjoys it.
“Sometimes with older players it’s more of a job, but he has come from nothing and he’s come in and taken his chance.
“When I first came in he was one of the people who made me think ‘wow, he’s a really good player’.
“He’s an unbelievable finisher. I call him ‘Defoe’ because that’s how he is.
“He loves it. He calls himself ‘Defoe’. He follows him on Instagram and he thinks he’s Defoe!
“He’s got good feet and he’s a great finisher and he’s going to be a great asset for the club.
“He’s a confident boy and I’m delighted for him that he’s got a new deal.”
The Nigeria international also revealed how he has acted as something of a mentor to Berahino, having experienced coming onto the top-flight scene as a youngster for the Toffees.
“It’s difficult for him,” Anichebe added.
“I speak to him sometimes because there are a few games when he’s come on and scored and then he’s got frustrated because he’s not started the next game.
“When I was at Everton I’d come on and score and then not start the next game, but every young players goes through that.
“You just play your part in the team when there are senior players in front of you, and you just wait your turn.
“He has waited his turn and he’s come in and done well.”