When you hold a sparkling diamond in your hand you should not be surprised when it is coveted by others.
New English Premier League champion Andy Robertson played only 44 times for Dundee United and was always destined for greater things on a grander stage.
He shone brightly, though, with the Tangerines expertly polishing up a precious jewel that had been mined by Queen’s Park, while Hull City did their bit to get him ready for the biggest move of all to Liverpool.
Robertson already had a claim on the title of highest achiever to have been at Tannadice then gone on to star elsewhere.
A Champions League medal with the Reds thanks to the final victory over Tottenham Hotspur in May of last year made sure of that.
By then, of course, he had also climbed the heights of the Scotland captaincy.
Thursday night’s domestic title win – Liverpool’s first for 30 years – made sure of his legendary status at Anfield.
Has another ex-United player even come close to rivalling Robertson for that illustrious alumni honour?
The first candidate worth considering is another Liverpool legend – Ron Yeats.
He played 118 times for the Tannadice men and helped them clinch promotion to the First Division before joining Bill Shankly’s men for the considerable fee of £30,000 in July 1961.
The famous Scots manager said of his new player: “The man is a mountain. Go in the dressing room and walk around him.”
Yeats would spend a decade at Anfield and is viewed as one of the foundation stones on which the club’s incredible success under Shankly and Bob Paisley was built.
He won the title twice, in seasons 1963-64 and 65-66, but European success eluded him and he was capped just twice by Scotland.
The next is Andy Gray who, like Robertson, took Scottish football by storm in a tangerine jersey.
Gray played a fair amount of games for the club – 95 to be precise – before he was lured by the bright lights of English football.
Aged just 19, the striker joined Aston Villa for £110,000 in September 1975.
Just four years later he was the subject of a record £1.49 million bid from Wolves and scored the winning goal for them in the 1979 League Cup final.
Gray tasted his greatest success with Everton, scoring in the final of the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1984 and winning the title the following season. He was also capped 20 times by Scotland.
Richard Gough also deserves a mention. A valued member of United’s own championship-winning side in 1983, Gough made 256 appearances for the Tangerines before leaving for Tottenham for a fee of £750,000.
His stay at White Hart Lane was just a year-long and he moved to Rangers, becoming the first £1 million-plus signing by a Scottish club. The Light Blues got their money’s worth, though with Gough a key part of every one of their nine-in-a-row title victories.The South-African-born defender was also capped 61 times for Scotland.
Another ex-United man who reached dizzy heights down south was Kevin Gallacher.
Scorer of that famous goal against Barcelona in 1987, Gallacher left the Tangerines for £950,000 to join Coventry in January 1990.
He would go on to have his greatest success with Blackburn Rovers but successive leg breaks would keep him sidelined as the Ewood Park club became English champions in season 1994-95. Gallacher also starred for Newcastle and made 53 appearances for his country.
Last but by no means least is Christian Dailly, who enjoyed a successful career south of the border after booking his place in United’s history books by laying on the Craig Brewster goal that helped win the Tangerines collect first Scottish Cup against Rangers in 1994.
Dailly made the switch to Derby County for a fee reported to be in the region of £1 million and would go on to play for Blackburn, West Ham United, Southampton (loan) and Rangers, where he won the Scottish title in season 2008-09, as well as a further two Scottish Cups. The Dundee-born player was a terrific servant to the Scots national team and won 67 caps.
Other contenders worth a mention include midfielder Billy McKinlay and striker Duncan Ferguson.
However, given the strength of the exciting Liverpool side built by Jurgen Klopp and the fact that 26-year-old Robertson has his best years still in front of him, he looks likely to be the most successful of all the ex-United men who have sought their fortune south of the border.