Blackburn Rovers manager Steve Kean has warned that the club may be forced to sell winger Junior Hoilett in the January transfer window or risk losing the player for nothing later this year.
Hoilett, 21, has only six months left on his current Rovers contract and has so far stalled on signing a new deal, with other clubs reported to be interested in the Canadian youngster.
Although the departure of one of Blackburn's best young players would be greeted with howls of dismay by the club's supporters, Kean warned Rovers may be left with no choice.
Kean accepted that Hoilett now holds all the cards in his contract negotiations. "Any player does when it gets down to six months," he said. "What we have to do is to continue to be open and honest with Junior and say 'we want you to stay'.
"If he would like to commit his future to the club we have always said from day one that we would like to get it tied up. He has probably taken the opportunity to look elsewhere. I don't know where he is on it. If we can get to a point where he wants to sign then great.
"If not, if there is a bid that comes in then we would obviously have to consider that, and the fact that he hadn't signed. But no bids have come in."
Kean also conceded Hoilett should have been tied to a longer deal in 2010. "A couple of years ago when we only signed him for two years we should have made that a longer contract," the Scot added.
"Everybody would say we should have pushed to make it longer because now when there's six months left it's tough for the club."