Paul Hegarty believes Dundee United’s wonderkids are potential League winners.
But the Tangerines legend fears they’ll struggle to fulfil their potential at Tannadice because they’ll be poached by top clubs before they gel as a team.
United’s bright start to the season has been made all the more impressive by the stunning form of young stars Ryan Gauld, John Souttar, Andy Robertson, Stuart Armstrong and Gary Mackay-Steven.
Scouts from some of Europe’s top clubs have already made the pilgrimage to Tannadice and more are sure to follow.
That’s good news as far as United’s bank balance is concerned, but Hegarty can’t help but wonder whether their trophy cabinet will be the thing to suffer after the young guns go.
He said: “I’ve been so impressed with the young lads this season, they’ve been magnificent.
“The way they’ve mixed with the more-experienced professionals has been a joy to watch and it’s obviously paying dividends.
“That’s always going to lead to interest from bigger clubs that’s the way football is these days. So it’s good that the club has managed to get them tied up for the foreseeable future.
“But if for some reason they could stay for a couple of years, there’s no
telling what they could achieve as a team.
“They’ve only been playing together for half a season. If they had another couple of years together they’ll only get better.
“When I was playing it was different because you were there for years. Certainly that was the case at Tannadice.
“You saw the benefit of that in terms of what the team achieved, but as I said, things are different now.
“That’s a shame in one respect, because these players could do very well given time together, but as long as the club are compensated if they move on, that’s beneficial, too.”