Tony Mowbray feels it is 'unlikely' that Kevin Phillips will be a West Bromwich Albion player next season.
Phillips is currently out of contract and is thought to have been offered a one-year deal to stay at the Hawthorns.
The former England striker is believed to be holding out for a two-year contract and has been linked with local rivals Birmingham City.
Baggies boss Mowbray is reluctant to give Phillips a two-year deal and is pessimistic about the forward, who turns 35 later this month, signing an extension.
"I've spoken to Kevin over the last few days," Mowbray told the club's official website. "To be fair, I think he leaves most things in the hands of his advisors, who are out of the country at the moment.
"I'm pretty sure his preferred choice would be to stay here. But, at this moment, it is unlikely he will stay here.
"If there's a stumbling block that we can't overcome, then so be it. That's life and we all move on.
"My strong belief, particularly when footballers get to 35, is that I find it very hard to hand out two-year contracts to 35 year olds - however well they've done.
"I genuinely believe if Kevin wants to stay he should back his ability and earn his second year. To be fair, it's not a big task based on the contract that was put in front of him.
"It's out of our hands because he's out of contract and we're getting on with things with the players that are here.
"Our enquiries are continuing for other players and if Kevin re-signs that's great - but nothing will change from our perspective. We're looking for another striker regardless of what he does."