New Sheffield Wednesday signing Saido Berahino says moving abroad was the best choice he ever made, but he always wanted to return to England eventually.
After an underwhelming spell with Stoke City came to an end in 2019, Berahino spent the next two years in Belgium, where he played for Zulte Waregem and Charleroi.
Berahino then returned to England this summer, joining Wednesday on what is thought to be a one-year deal, with the club holding the option to extend that deal by a further 12 months.
Now it seems that while the striker always planned on returning to England, Berahino still believes that move to Europe has proved hugely beneficial for him.
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Reflecting on his time abroad, the 28-year-old told TalkSport: “I think the best choice that I ever made was to go away, just to get away from everything really. I had a lot of time to think to myself and that really helped me look back and think about my career and life. It was the best choice I made.
“I started learning my trade in England since I was a boy so I always loved playing in England, especially the fans, I haven’t played in front of any fans like English fans.
“This was always the dream to come back. When I left I think it matured me as a person and I’ve come back a better player I feel. I’m glad I’m back, glad I’m back among family as well which is important to me.”
Indeed, it seems as though Berahino has certainly enjoyed his time with Wednesday so far, as he added: “I’ve missed a lot of playing time at a high level and now I feel like a little boy again looking forward to every training session, to try and improve every day and also be a winner.
“I’ve come back with a mindset where I’m trying to win something. I’m trying to get the best performance each game. I’m really, really happy to be here.”
Since joining the Owls on the final day of the summer transfer window, Berahino has featured twice for Darren Moore’s side, scoring his first goal for the club in last week’s 1-1 draw with Shrewsbury.
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Given his profile and reputation, this was certainly an eye-catching signing for the Owls, and much will be expected of Berahino during his time at Hillsborough.
As a result, the fact that Berahino appears to have been rejuvenated by his time in Belgium, suggests he ought to be capable of making the required impact for Moore’s side.
Indeed, it is also good to see that he is clearly settling well, which should help him to hit the ground running, something he already appears to have done in getting that early goal under his belt.