The only way to reverse the talent drain from Caley Thistle to Ross County is for Inverness to get promoted.
That is the view of Michael Fraser, who kept goal for both teams and believes the situation in the Highlands has to be treated as a unique one.
Five players in the last three years – Ross Draper, Iain Vigurs, Joe Chalmers, Coll Donaldson and Carl Tremarco – have swapped one side of the Kessock Bridge for the other.
However, during Fraser’s days as a player at Inverness, it was the other way round, with the likes of John Rankin and Don Cowie leaving County for the Caley Jags.
The significant distances involved with relocating mean that recruiting players from each other would remove one significant obstacle.
Fraser believes that as unpopular a move it may be among supporters, players are always going to go play at the highest level.
He said: “I’m pretty sure they’ve not left because they don’t like the club, the gaffer or their team-mates. They’ve been given the opportunity to earn a bit more money and play in the league above.
“I have never head any of them leaving on bad terms. It’s a good chance to play in the Premiership every week and if you’re Caley Thistle, you need to get back up and establish yourself.
“Down south boys can go to different teams and not move house. It’s a big upheaval. People can kid on about loyalty in football, but it’s a business. County are a Premiership team and can probably pay more just now.
“Look at Don Cowie. He’s Ross County through and through, but moved to Caley Thistle to develop his career. Eighteen months later he moves down to England. He thought of it as a career move, but is still a good County guy.”
Fraser hopes the Caley Jags can rebuild under John Robertson for a fourth season in the Championship, with their under-threat academy key to their future.
Some of Caley Thistle’s youth team goalkeepers take part in Fraser’s own coaching academy and he sees evidence of talent coming through the ranks.
He added: “It’s their best bet, trying to get as many young players through as possible. From what I’m hearing there’s a lot of good young players; it’s being able to afford to keep them, so I hope they don’t completely go away from that.
“If they can get young boys in and playing, they can make money off them. Just look at Ryan Christie. The talent is there, it’s about keeping them and giving them a chance when they’re ready.
“If they didn’t have John Robertson I’d be even more concerned. The boys love playing for him – that’s his biggest asset.”