Andy Wilkinson has admitted he could be forced to leave Stoke for Blackpool for the sake of his career.
The young defender saw a £200,000 bid from the Seasiders for his services rejected by Stoke on transfer deadline day.
Wilkinson has struggled to secure a regular first-team place at the Britannia Stadium and spent a spell on loan with Blackpool last season.
And while the lifelong Stoke fan does not want to leave Tony Pulis' club, he is keen to be playing regular football.
He told the Stoke Sentinel: "It is up in the air at the moment, so I am not sure what is happening. Things are in the hands of both clubs.
"However, I am flattered by Blackpool's interest as I believe they have had four or five offers turned down. The price Stoke want for me is also quite surprising, and flattering.
"I am a Stoke fan, so it is my dream to be playing for them every week, but I need to be playing to further my career.
"I enjoyed it at Blackpool last year. They were a great set of lads and I was playing regularly.
"I need to speak to Tony Pulis about all this, but he has been brilliant with me."
With the transfer window now closed, Blackpool have suggested an initial loan deal which would then be made permanent at the start of next year.
Pulis said: "Andy is our player and I think a lot of him. But I can understand where he is coming from, so it is a case of balancing it all up.
"We have to look after our young players, but also look after the football club.
"We have brought Gabriel Zakuani in, which makes us a bit stronger in that area, so we will look at the situation."