Saido set for Arsenal role
ALAN Irvine confirmed Saido Berahino is ready for Saturday's Barclays Premier League game against Arsenal.
The 21-year-old found himself on the receiving end of adverse newspaper reports this week, relating to an off-the-field matter that is subject to a police investigation.
But Irvine has no qualms about Berahino being considered for the visit of Arsene Wenger's men.
Irvine confirmed Berahino would be fit following a minor hamstring scare, with Sebastien Pocognoli also recovering from his injury.
James Morrison missed training on Thursday due to an illness but hopes to recover.
Addressing today's media conference, Irvine also spoke about the visit of Arsenal and a host of other subjects.
Speaking about BERAHINO, Irvine said:
"We had a little scare over Berahino earlier in the week because he had a tight hamstring.
"But he trained on Thursday and trained very well.
"I had a football chat with him earlier this week - his head is in the right place.
"He scored a whole load of goals in training and if he plays like that on Saturday I'll be delighted."
On TEAM-NEWS in general, Irvine continued:
"Claudio (Yacob) played last week because James Morrison was ill. It was only on the Saturday morning we decided that he would make the bench, having decided on the Friday that he wasn't going to be well enough to start the game.
"James was ill again on Thursday - it's still hanging over him a bit. But we hope he will be ok tomorrow.
"Jonas has had his (foot) op but Sebastien Pocognoli came back to training and has trained well. We're hopeful he'll be in contention."
On the subject of ARSENAL, he added:
"Arsenal are a very good side. They are exceptional going forward, very creative, they pass and move very well.
"Anyone who saw their game against Manchester United will know that they could easily have won that game. And they had a good game in midweek against Dortmund.
"That was a hard midweek game for them but they are used to playing in the Premier League after Champions League games. I suspect they will be ready for the game at the weekend.
"Jack Wilshere is out for a while which is obviously a big blow for them. But we will face a very good team full of international players, regardless of what injuries they have."