For Blackburn Rovers fans, there is one piece of recent news that will surely have seemed inevitable for weeks.
Earlier this week, The Sun reported that Premier League duo Brighton and Aston Villa are interested in Rovers midfielder Bradley Dack.
The news could now put Rovers in a difficult situation with regards to their prized asset going forward this summer, and we’ve taken an in depth look at that in our latest FLW Six Point Opinion.
Firstly, why the interest in Dack?
“When you look at the stats, it seems fairly obvious really.
“Since joining Blackburn from Gillingham two seasons, Dack has been directly involved in 55 goals (36 goals and 19 assists) in 90 appearances in all competitions.
“It’s the sort of record that is always going to attract attention, and while Blackburn have benefitted from it during the season, they now have to deal with it during the transfer window.”
How much will Blackburn demand for him?
“According to The Daily Mail, Rovers have slapped an £18 million price tag on Dack.
“That may seem a lot for someone who has had just one season in the Championship, but with two years left on his Ewood Park contract, Rovers are currently in no urgent need to sell.
“They would also need to replace him if he does go, so they will want as big a transfer fee as possible to fund that search.”
Would he want to go?
“On the face of it, a move to the Premier League is the obvious choice for Dack.
“The two clubs linked with Dack however, may well be in a relegation dogfight, and you wonder if that is something Dack will want to be involved in, particularly if he isn’t going to be a guaranteed starter.
“At Rovers he is always going to be a key man and one of the first names on the team sheet. He has the chance to write his name in club folklore if he leads them back to the promised land, but Rovers will have to show him they are ready to build a squad capable of doing that around him quickly.”
Which club would be his preferred destination?
“Of the two currently said to be interested, Villa seem the obvious choice.
“They are much closer to where Dack is currently based and are going into the season on the high of a promotion campaign, whereas confidence may be low at Brighton after only just securing survival late in the season last year.
“It may however come down to where Dack could get the most game time, and you feel that Aston Villa’s current midfield would be harder for Dack to break into than Brighton’s.”
How would he do in the Premier League?
“If his performances this season are anything to go by, pretty well.
“Dack has adapted well to life in the Championship, and you can’t see him being daunted by the step up to the top tier as a result.
“He is one of those players who has that instinct to get into the box and on the end of chances, and that pretty much guarantees you goals wherever you go.”
Finally, where would it leave Blackburn if he does go?
“In a frustrating position you would imagine.
“Rovers do have plenty of other options going forward, but none of them have the same combination of pace, incisiveness and ruthlessness that Dack does when he is on top form.
“They should still have enough to keep well clear of the relegation zone, but it would surely their hopes of competing for a place in the Premier League of their own.”