I tweeted something last night, pretty much as soon as I found out about Benteke and it has had me thinking all night.
It was asking if you could put a price on loyalty. Then I wrote that maybe you can't, but the price for Benteke to sit on the bench for the next three seasons is £3.1mn.
That figure was worked out if we believe he is on £20,0000 a week and that he has three years left on his current deal and you know what, it isn't that much. Why not just tell him no and throw him into the reserves if he doesn't want to give 100% to the first team?
It's a World Cup season
And you may think it's because we have a World Cup next year that I write that, because he'll want to be playing in the World Cup, but actually know, I write it because I think he'll want to play football regardless, because he's a kid that likes to play football. I don't think it matters that it's a World Cup year, I think he'll get picked in the squad no matter what.
I also don't think it has anything potentially to do with Darren Bent. Lambert hasn't wanted him since pretty much day one and he's off as soon as someone matches or probably comes close to his weekly salary and if you believe what Stan Collymore writes on Twitter, that is £100,000 a week.
I, for the record, don't believe what Stan Collymore writes om Twitter, but I do think he has a fantastic borrowed opinion on most things. But, that's just an opinion and it can change .... and change again.
Transfer request time
But back to the main story; Benteke hands in a transfer request and I think to myself; so what, Rooney hands one in every year and is still a Manchester United player.
He also signed a contract to play for us for another three years and I think I'd bloody love it if someone finally came out and told us all the game was broken, but they're not having it and I'd love it even more if it was Aston Villa that showed the footballing world how to do things.
I know that wont happen or the chances are slim, but it's only £3.1mn over the next three seasons. Hell, we could make him sit on the bench this season and still get £20mn for him next summer and we would have got our way.
But I'd still really like Benteke to be an Aston Villa player next season and you know what, the club hold all the best cards. He has a contract and there is no pressure to sell. I know the chances are slim, but there is a chance he has been badly advised and all will be rectified.
And I hope, well actually, I don't really care what happens in this regard, but if we did force him to stay, it would be so much nicer if he wanted to play football too.