The loan of Benfica playmaker Bernardo Silva to French club Monaco has been made permanent in exchange for €15.75 million entering the Lisbon club's coffers.
Portugal U21 international Bernardo has played an increasingly significant role at the club from the principality, who are managed by Portuguese coach Leonardo Jardim. Just this past weekend he was named in the Ligue1 "Team of the Week" by L'Equipe after scoring the winner in Monaco's 1-0 victory over Nantes.
Bernardo Silva forms a midfield partnership with compatriot João Moutinho, revealing this week that he considers the ex Sporting and Porto midfielder "an example, who has helped me grow and develop."
Nevertheless, the 20-year-old has never hidden his fanatical support for Benfica, stating on several occasions that he hopes to return to the Estádio da Luz and fight for a first-team berth.
The sale will no doubt attract criticism given that it contradicts the frequent declarations from Benfica president Luís Filipe Vieira that the goal is to build a team largely comprising of Portuguese youth players nurtured at the club's Seixal Academy.
On the other side of the coin is the fact that throughout Jorge Jesus's six-year reign as Benfica coach his team set-up has not included a pure No10 - precisely the position Bernardo excels in.
The January transfer window has seen several Benfica's youth players sent out on loan until the end of the season. Rúben Pinto and Fábio Cardoso will play at Paços de Ferreira, while Bébe (Cordoba), Hélder Costa (Deportivo La Coruna) and Nélson Oliveira (Swansea) will try their luck abroad.