Tottenham's Gareth Bale is said to be angling for a move, and some say that, if he stays, he won't give his all to the club this coming season.
I don't believe that for one moment - Bale is a consummate professional, and will continue to give his best wherever he is next term - although there is a risk, of course, that his performance could drop if his head isn't in the right place if he's playing somewhere he'd rather not be.
But selling Bale now because he might not try his best next season is not the reason Spurs' Chairman Daniel Levy might end up taking the silly money said to be on offer now for Bale's services by Real Madrid.
No, Levy will be taking a huge gamble sticking with Bale if he doesn't take the money (and players) and run. The huge amount of dosh now said being offered by Real Madrid (£51m in cash and a swap for £44m-rated Angel Di Maria and Fabio Coentrao) is surely a once-in-a-lifetime deal for Spurs.
Bale's performances last season for Tottenham were on another level, but there's no guarantee that he will be able to continue playing that kind of football this season. It's not impossible, of course, but opposing managers will have learned more about his weaknesses, and rival players will be given instructions to try keep him out of the game (as Harry Redknapp's QPR successfully did at Loftus Road last season).
So, Bale's value could be at its peak, as may be Real Madrid's desire to sign him (the club currently has a point to prove in Spain, and needs to show its fans and players how ambitious it is).
Timing, they say, is everything. And, if the kind of silly money is on offer for Gareth Bale, Levy really only has one sensible option. You have to know when to hold and when to fold. And, as Levy's no fool, so it will be Bale out at Tottenham.
image: © jansolo09