Robbie Fowler took aim at Man Utd over their pursuit of Jadon Sancho, and picked out one key piece of information the club must first find out before sanctioning any deal.
The Red Devils have been strongly linked with a move for the 20-year-old, with new light on the ‘murky’ deal recently shed.
Irrespective of whether the final fee is closer to Man Utd or Dortmund’s respective valuations, one thing is for sure, the figures will be huge.
And it is this large spending that has irked Liverpool legend Fowler, who cut an incredulous figure when commenting on the speculation.
‘Surely not? You’d have said, though, that it would be impossible for Italian clubs to be shelling out £60m-plus on a player.
‘Yet two of them have apparently done that already. Juventus, with £65m for Arthur, and Napoli a mind-boggling £75m for Victor Osimhen. Ridiculous. Ridiculous. Ridiculous.
‘And if United pay £100m for Sancho – even if it’s in instalments – then that’s what he’s worth, too.
‘I don’t get it personally, but I’m no accountant. Who am I to say they can’t afford such a fee if they are going to lose £200m due to the pandemic?
‘I reckon it’s a simple calculation. What will the player cost compared to what he can earn for you in terms of trophies and income?’
Unable to resist a cheeky dig at Utd’s relative struggles in the transfer window since Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure, Fowler continued: ‘So many times United have got that calculation wrong in recent years, but at least Sancho fits their new philosophy.
‘He’s still only 20 and is among the best in the whole of Europe. He’s done it at a high level, too. Consistently.
‘If he reproduces the stats he has for Dortmund over five years elsewhere, then what’s it worth?
‘I honestly don’t know.’
Questions have been asked about Sancho’s character in the past, with Dortmund previously disciplining the player for a number of team breaches.
It is this query that Fowler believes The Red Devils must first find the answer to before committing to such an enormous financial outlay.
‘And I don’t know if there is any truth in the questions we always seem to hear about his character.
‘Is he difficult just because he has been strong-willed in wanting to improve and progress? In having ambition?
‘Well, I think I’d be finding out the answer to that question before blowing £100m.’