Two recent midfielder reports concerning Everton could well suggest that Tom Davies is a man set for the exit door from Goodison Park this summer transfer window, on loan or permanently.
The youngster is a player that all Blues want to see succeed – but sentiment can only get you so far in the Premier League.
A local lad, Blues have loved Davies getting stuck in in the middle of the park and showing great endeavour – particularly in his first season when breaking into the team.
Should he leave?
As many young players do, though, he has plateaued a little bit and now the plan needs to be to see whether he is going to kick on again and be the local hero Blues fans want, or whether he is going to have to play elsewhere to try and spark things off.
Recent transfer reports suggest that the latter could well be the case, too.
Both players fill similar roles as Davies in the middle of the park, as well.
Both are busy, box-to-box central players that offer their services at both ends of the pitch – it’s perhaps a dying art in the Premier League, once the division was awash with them, but there are still few better sights than a midfielder marauding around the pitch, running the show.
For all three, they are probably all a bit shy of doing that but Davies, most of all, seems short.
Longstaff impressed earlier this season against Manchester United but still seems raw, whilst McGinn, before his injury, was perhaps the most outstanding player of the three – with only Jack Grealish, for obvious reasons, standing out more for Aston Villa.
Even so, regardless of who you rate most, the fact that Everton are apparently looking at two, young, busy midfielders suggests Davies might want to think about a loan move away.
You sense Everton want to give him as much of a chance as possible as succeeding at the club, but that could mean a temporary stint away from Merseyside is sanctioned.