Former Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has warned Spurs fans to brace themselves for the departure of Luka Modric.
The Croatia playmaker has been the subject of transfer speculation for the second consecutive summer, with Real Madrid reportedly his likeliest destination.
Chelsea's interest was rebuffed before last season and Modric went on to play a starring role for Spurs under Redknapp's management.
But the latter warned that the 26-year-old's excellence came at a price, with a promise to clear the way for a move away this year.
Real assistant coach Aitor Karanka recently praised the player in the Spanish press and Redknapp today told the Sun: "I would not be sure Luka would start the season at Tottenham.
"The club would be happy to sell if they get the right money. The chairman (Daniel Levy) said to him last year 'Give us one more season and if Real come in, I won't stand in your way'."
A silver lining of any possible departure would, of course, be the swelling of the transfer budget available to Redknapp's successor Andre Villas-Boas.
One possible target is Lyon and France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, whose agent and father Luc told the same newspaper: "I'm sure that Hugo's move will be accelerated if Modric joins Real."