Albion boss Steve Clarke believes Saido Berahino’s dream month with England and the Baggies will inspire other youngsters in the Hawthorns academy.
Berahino, 20, marked his full debut for Albion with a hat-trick against Newport in the Capital One Cup and then netted on his debut for England Under-21s against Moldova in the European Championships last week.
He followed that up with another strike to salvage a point for Gareth Southgate’s side as England’s kids drew 1-1 in Finland last night.
“He’s getting his rewards, so I’m absolutely delighted for him,” said Clarke.
“It’s good that we’re talking about one of the products from the club’s academy. You have to show your young players and your academy graduates that there is a path to the first team.
“If you close that path the boys lose impetus and their desire to get to the first team. It’s always important if you can and when you can to give them a chance.
“Sometimes it’s difficult because it’s a results-driven industry and you have to make sure you get the balance right between showing that path and making sure you win the matches.
“But it’s great for people like Mark Harrison (academy manager) and Jimmy Shan (under-18s coach) in the academy that they and all the other coaches can see that, if the boys are there, we will give them a chance.”