West Ham United have proven to be woeful salesman under the ownership of David Sullivan and David Gold.
Never has that been more evident than the combined £47.5million transfer fee received for Dimitri Payet and Marko Arnautovic.
Both players in the modern market could and should have gone for £50million plus, each.
West Ham make poor salesmen
Of course there were mitigating circumstances in both cases but the problem runs deeper than that.
West Ham fans look at the likes of Tottenham getting big sums for cast-offs over the years.
Then they see a promising young talent such as Marcus Browne sold for a reported fee of a paltry £200,000-300,000.
And they wonder why, given West Ham’s history of producing top talent, their club fail to do the same in recent years.
One man who thinks he knows the answer is former Academy chief Terry Westley.
Former academy boss not surprised by paltry Browne fee
Speaking in a column he did with fellow West Ham website Claret & Hugh, Westley said the club must change the way they handle emerging talent if they want to make money off those who are ultimately not up to it with the first team.
“His reported fee of around £200k is no big surprise because he has yet to make a first team appearance and there could be a lesson learned in that direction by the Irons,” Westley told C&H.
“Some other clubs are quite clever in giving their better young players 10 or a dozen first team outings which immediately elevates the price when they look to move them on.
“Clubs want to know they can hack it at that level and will see it as a bit of a gamble when untested youngsters join the club and thus the price is lower than it should be.”
Is Europa League the key to unlock academy value
Perhaps the key to West Ham unlocking the value in their young offcasts is Europa League football.
That would afford more opportunity for emerging talent to get game time at a high level.
West Ham will certainly be aiming to qualify for the Europa League this season.