In the prelude to their FA Cup final loss against Arsenal, Aston Villa chief Tim Sherwood spoke about the prospect of star striker Christian Benteke leaving this summer.
The former Tottenham tactician revealed he has a £32.5m buy out clause in his contract and, as a result, may not be able to stop the Belgian bulldozer being sold, but also provided his talisman with some home truths he must consider before opting to depart Villa Park.
Taking a place of prominence in Sherwood’s argument was the fact that Euro 2016 is on the horizon.
“We’re building up to a European Championship…It’s a tournament where you feel that Belgium will be one of the favourites to win it. By playing for Aston Villa, it hasn’t hindered him being the first choice at Belgium, up to now.”
The implication is, why risk a big-money move elsewhere where the guarantee of first-team football doesn’t exist and potentially lose that main-man status with the national side when you don’t need to?
It’s a train of thought several other Premier League practitioners would do well to listen to, starting with one to share a dressing room with Benteke.
The Dutchman they call ‘Concrete’ is out of contract at the end of June and is widely expected to leave Villa for nothing amid rumoured interest from Manchester United and Arsenal.
Having only been fit for half of this season and not performing especially well when he has featured, it is almost assured that Vlaar would be a back up at best for any team above the Villans’ stature.
Reclaiming his spot at the heart of the Netherlands defence will be impossible if this is the case.
The Jamaica-born contract rebel has been tipped to leave Anfield after contract talks broke down on Merseyside.
England have stiff competition for the spot at the tip of the midfield diamond where Sterling has been deployed of late, with Wayne Rooney, Ross Barkley and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain all capable of playing there and are favourites of manager Roy Hodgson.
Selecting Sterling will be impossible if he isn’t playing and performing regularly, so a high-profile move to a top side may be unwise at this time.
Newcastle’s all-action midfield man has been linked with a switch to Arsenal, despite appearing some way below the standard required to break into the Gunners’ midfield.
Revelling in the confidence-boosting role of big fish in the small pond, Sissoko regularly makes Didier Deschamps’ star-studded France squad and quite often commands a starting berth.
Sacrificing his superstardom on Tyneside for a spot on the Arsenal bench will surely bring an end to this with Les Bleus boasting such a luxury of talent in his position.