Brentford boss Thomas Frank claimed Said Benrahma had added another few million to his price tag after his two goals sank Fulham in the Carabao Cup.
Algerian midfielder Benrahma has been linked with a move to the Premier League all summer, with Chelsea, Arsenal, Crystal Palace and Aston Villa among those believed to be interested.
But with a move yet to materialise, Frank handed Benrahma his first start of the season and was rewarded with a spectacular display in a convincing 3-0 win.
“Am I confident he will stay? I’m confident that I would love him to stay, and I would love to have him,” said Frank.
“But I don’t know. Honestly. If the price is right we are open to selling, but if not we will be happy for him to stay.
“Either we are going to get a top price or we are going to keep one of the best players in the Championship. Has he added a few million to his price? 100 per cent!”
Brentford were leading through a first-half Marcus Forss goal when Benrahma grabbed his first, finishing at the far post from a free-kick.
His second was a special strike, turning and firing home from 25 yards to give his potential suitors another nudge.
What Brentford would have given for a performance like this two months ago, when they were beaten to promotion by Fulham in the Sky Bet Championship play-off final at Wembley.
Frank insisted this victory was not about revenge but about reaching the quarter-finals of the League Cup for the first time in their history.
“No, but it’s particularly satisfying that we wrote history tonight at the new stadium,” he added. “Beating a local rival and creating history, we are very pleased.”
On this evidence Brentford may well have been the better equipped to make a decent fist of the Premier League.
Defeat meant more misery for Fulham boss Scott Parker, whose side have lost all three matches upon their return to the top flight.
Parker handed a debut to on-loan full-back Ola Aina but his defence still needs strengthening as a matter of urgency,
“We all understand, we’ve strengthened in certain areas but it’s quite clear the team in that area needs some help. But there’s nothing at the moment,” said Parker.
“We are where we are. This is a team in transition, we came fourth in the Championship last year.
“The players are learning, it’s new to them. When you go up to the Premier League you need to learn quickly.
“But we’re not the only team to have lost three matches. There are issues that need to be resolved and hopefully we will do that.”
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