By Nick Ware

20th Jul, 2021 | 3:32pm

Chris Lepkowski claims Matheus Pereira made decision to skip West Brom v Sheffield Wednesday

West Brom midfielder Matheus Pereira made the decision not to play in Tuesday’s behind-closed-doors friendly versus Sheffield Wednesday, according to Chris Lepkowski.

The former Birmingham Mail journalist made the claim on his personal Twitter profile on Tuesday afternoon, during Albion’s game against the Owls.

One fan, Martin, made the suggestion that the 25-year-old had downed tools amid transfer speculation this summer.

Another supporter, Danny, cast doubts over this and suggested it could be the club’s choice to protect his status as a big financial asset.

However, Lepkowski responded: “His decision Danny. Martin has this one correct.”

Not all that surprising

This is just how modern football is now, so it shouldn’t come as too much of a shock to supporters.

Some fans of an older disposition may hark back to the days of their club’s stars ‘playing for the badge’ and so on, but the reality is that the sport has changed beyond recognition over the last five, ten, 20 years.

In fairness, can we blame the players too much?

Let’s say Pereira is being chased by Premier League clubs. He stands to earn considerably more than he would do at West Brom, while the sporting merits of such a move are also significant.

He has given two years of very good service – 20 goals and multiple assists – and is well worth his move back to the Premier League.

He’s not an Albion fan, isn’t from the area, so does he really owe the club masses amounts of loyalty?

Pereira paid his price tag back on the pitch, and you can bet that if he had not hit the heights he had the club would have been quick to ship him off as soon as possible.

Football is a cut-throat business, and transfer ‘sagas’ are the norm now.

Of course, we should be holding out for a fair fee for him, and if that doesn’t come then he should knuckle down and spearhead our push for promotion.

But, in the meantime, it’s hard to begrudge him a move back to the level his talents deserve, and it would be hard for him to give his all in a relatively meaningless friendly knowing there was a chance he could sustain an injury and a move be scuppered.

In other West Brom news, our Albion Super Fans are outraged at a major development over this midfielder’s future.

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