I’m happy, insists Matheus Pereira – as Sam Allardyce tells him to pick up the pace

Matheus Pereira has hit out at reports he is unhappy at Albion – as Sam Allardyce told him moving the ball quicker is key to him shining in the Premier League.

Kenneth Dougall of Blackpool and Matheus Pereira of West Bromwich Albion.
Kenneth Dougall of Blackpool and Matheus Pereira of West Bromwich Albion.

Arguably the Championship’s stand-out performer last season, the Brazilian scored eight goals and registered 16 assists to help inspire the Baggies to promotion.

That success led to Albion paying £8.25million to turn Pereira’s loan move from Sporting Lisbon into a permanent transfer – with the playmaker signing a four-year deal at The Hawthorns.

Both the fee and Pereira’s wages for that permanent move – understood to be in the region of £30,000 a week – were agreed when his initial loan was negotiated.

But just two months later Albion offered him fresh terms – believed to be worth £45,000 a week with an extra year – to draw the 24-year-old closer to the club’s top earners.

Pereira, is is understood, now has a different agent to the one that first negotiated his move to The Hawthorns.

And reports emerged yesterday stating his representatives have not yet responded to the offer that’s been made – with it remaining on the table.

It was also suggested that the 24-year-old’s demeanour at Albion has changed this season.

According to the report, Pereira was ‘positive, upbeat and charismatic’ during the promotion winning season.

Whereas this year he is said to be more quiet and reserved within the dressing room.

Pereira, though, took to social media to dismiss that claim.

“Things are not always as they seem or how people portray them to be,” he tweeted.

“It’s true I’m not happy! I’m not happy because of what our team is having to endure, not happy because of the lack of positive results, because we try and try.

“However we have not achieved the results.

“But this does not change or shift focus.

“I’m here, I’m focused on doing my best to help the team in every way possible.

“I’m a professional, I have a winning spirit, and winning will always be my main goal.

“I love and respect each one of you fans that embraced me since my arrival at the club. Every drop of sweat I pour is for you.

“The fight is on.”

Pereira then signed off his tweet with the praying emoji and a blue heart.

A player of undoubted talent, there have been glimpses of the Brazilian’s outstanding ability this year.

Against Sheffield United in November for example, Pereira created nine chances for his team-mates.

That is at least three more than any other player has managed in a single Premier League game this season.

But Allardyce believes the Brazilian needs to play at a slightly quicker tempo if he is to reproduce his best form in the Premier League week-in, week-out.

“It’s very simple,” Allardyce said when asked how Pereira can improve.

“This is the Premier League and he needs to do it quickly – much quicker than he did in the Championship.

“Then he will show his very skilful qualities.

“But if he chooses to do it at his pace in the Premier League, then he won’t be successful.”

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