When Arsenal decided against selling Alexis Sanchez on Deadline Day, they did so at a huge risk.
Manchester City made a £60million bid for the Chilean despite him being in the final year of his contract.
The Gunners had spent the summer warning he wasn't for sale, yet they finally appeared ready to cave, on the condition they signed Monaco's Thomas Lemar as a replacement.
Once their pursuit of the winger had fallen through, it became clear that Sanchez would have to stay in north London against his will.
Keeping their best player should be seen as big plus, though it would be better if he actually wanted to be there.
Of course, the biggest dilemma for the club was weighing up whether to lose him for nothing in June 2018, or cash in on him and endure seeing him play for a Premier League rival.
That problem hasn't entirely gone away, as the January transfer window will be upon us before we know it.
The Telegraph report that as such, Arsenal players now understand that Sanchez will be sold in the New Year. It's thought that decision has actually been met with relief, as for as long as the 28-year-old is at the Emirates, speculation is going to surround his future.
Arsenal won't be getting nearly as much
City are expected to make a cash offer, with the forward keen to make the move because he wants to firstly reunite with Pep Guardiola, his former Barcelona boss, and secondly, win regular silverware.
Champions League football will also be on offer and he will not be cup-tied because he will only have participated in the Europa League so far this season.
The Daily Mail recently suggested that City intend to put just £20million on the table - which is perfectly reasonable given the advanced state of his contract - so Arsenal have essentially just thrown away £40m for the sake of getting four more months out of him.
On the bright side, they will then have the whole of the January transfer window to reinvest the money in another attacking player.
Should Arsenal have sold Sanchez in the summer? Have your say in the comments.
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