Kevin Phillips fears Leeds United will be forced into selling Kalvin Phillips if they do not secure promotion this season.
The former Sunderland and Aston Villa striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, suggested a Championship season played behind-closed-doors would be a potentially devastating financial blow to clubs.
EFL chairman Rick Parry, providing evidence to the MPs at the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee on Tuesday, claimed EFL clubs are heading for a £200million shortfall by September.
The former Liverpool chief also claimed that it could cost Championship clubs to play if the 2020/21 season was played behind-closed-doors.
The division is more reliant on gate receipt revenue than any other in England.
When asked by Football Insider if Leeds would have to sell players if they did not gain promotion and next season was played without fans, Phillips said: “I think they would be forced to sell some of their best players but it will not be just them.
“If they were not to go up and next season was played behind closed doors it would have a huge affect.
“As we know, the supporters generate a massive income for football clubs so it will have a knock-on effect and that will ultimately lead to players wanting to leave and perhaps having to leave.
“I think Kalvin Phillips will be top of that list. Although he said he would love to play for Leeds for the rest of his career if one of the big boys came knocking with a big bid I am not sure Leeds would be able to turn it down.”
Football Insider understands Phillips had a release clause inserted into the new contract he signed in September, believed to be between £20-25million, which can be activated if Leeds do not gain promotion this season.
However, in March the 24-year-old told FourFourTwo he sees his long-term future at Elland Road.
In other Leeds United news, Noel Whelan has urged Victor Orta to complete £10.6million deal for Ben White replacement.