If you believe good judges, or indeed practically anybody who has watched him these past few months and more, Jarrad Branthwaite will be one of the able few who cuts through the land-mass of Premier League under-23 football and carves an elite first-team career.

The assessment of the teenager's move to Everton must begin here: with what it means for Branthwaite himself, before getting down into the detail, politics and money.

Shelve that stuff for a moment. This is a boy’s future, his path and his life. Even in this cynical football age there is fantasy in the idea of a humble, raw and gifted lad from Wigton playing his way into the top-flight after just 14 games for his local club.

Imagine being Branthwaite as he walks through the doors at Goodison Park at 17; now a player for a club with rich domestic and European glory on its walls; the club of Dean and Ball, Latchford and Lineker, Southall and Sheedy, Catterick and Kendall, Royle and Rooney, now Ancelotti, and a bold new stadium to come.

What kid who dreams of a footballing future wouldn’t be seduced by that? Who, in fact, wouldn’t run towards it as fast as he could?

May Branthwaite, then, gallop into that scene with all the poise, balance and skill he can muster. May we see the steady flourishing of another first-rate player from this proud county. May he follow the likes of Dean Henderson on that yellow-brick road. May the best of luck go with him.

He will need it, as all aspiring pros do. The modern Premier League, with its boundless wealth, beckons more youngsters than ever into its big hands and squeezes out the best like pips.

Branthwaite’s challenge is to be among that treasured minority and not fall through cracks which may not look particularly wide at the outset. When you look at some of the faulty loan players Carlisle have had from that level, it is easier to see a landscape of hoarding and waste, which in some cases must be detrimental to the individuals concerned.

England’s top tier has created more professional footballers than is responsible and than it knows what to do with. Hence the wretched EFL Trophy, and many careers which, once they start falling, simply cannot stop.

Branthwaite will be nurtured well, coached well, given every advantage and invited to prove himself worthy of the step. There is every chance he will; not for nothing have England’s Under-18s and Under-19s been casting covetous eyes towards him lately, as well as various other big clubs.

Not for no reason at all have scouting lists stretched to several sides of A4 at Carlisle's games, ever more football people keen to see this tall, two-footed youngster with a composure beyond his years; perhaps the greatest concentration of major interest in a rookie Blues player since Matt Jansen had the brilliance to attract Manchester United and the nerve to turn them down in 1998.

Jansen was 20 when he left, and primed for the big stage. Branthwaite's road will be more gradual, as he steps back from the front-line football he briefly experienced with United, but his ability, tied to a good mentality, ought to take him most of the way.

The rest comes down to judgement calls such as this one, how he is steered along the path of new wealth, and how well he and those around him make the other big choices and decisions that will inevitably come down the line.

The rest of the matter at this end is about the club he leaves. Namely, what the deal does for Carlisle United, currently fourth bottom of the Football League and in a climate of supporter uncertainty, to put it a little kindly.

The short-term matters are apparent. It is unlikely the Blues will change their story about Branthwaite being too “ill” to play on Saturday, two days before he posed fresh-faced for unveiling photos at Everton, and the standard smoke, mirrors, frustrations and deviations of a high-profile (for Carlisle) transfer will be forgotten relatively soon.

Some fans do not feel they have been given full and fair disclosure on what’s been going on regarding Branthwaite in the last couple of weeks. Chris Beech has not appeared (in public utterance at least) at the centre of the loop.

Again, some of that can be put down to the usual game of dodge when a valuable asset is being traded. It is also apparent that, in their present structure, dealings like this are on the table of David Holdsworth, the director of football, rather than a "head coach" who routinely speaks more often.

Given some of the cynicism, United might still be wise to address some of what has and hasn't been said. The things that can have a more lasting and profound effect, though, include, immediately, how Carlisle use whatever funds they have secured up front or are coming quickly down the line.

In playing terms, this club has learned enough lessons about being weakened in January to know the risks of selling one of your best players (and certainly best central defender, unless Max Hunt proves an instant hit) at this stage of the season.

Given their predicament, nobody will be praising the business sense of this deal if it is followed by an even weaker-looking Blues team and squad slipping closer to the edge of non-league - a ruthless environment that has diminished better heeled and run clubs than United.

They must demonstrate, as well as say, how they plan to make themselves stronger. Eighteen days of the transfer window ought to be long enough for Holdsworth and Beech to go forth and speculate at least a little, even if January isn’t always the friendliest market for clubs.

Played right, it can be a move that has both current and longer benefits. The “substantial” deal, you can be sure, will be loaded with clauses that have every chance of delivering income to the Blues over a number of years.

That is the only responsible way to negotiate, and should Carlisle eventually relocate their front foot in a footballing (and public-acceptance) sense, that can provide comfort to supporters as well as those monitoring the bottom line.

A club capable of producing its own players and selling them for the greater good: isn't that what outfits at United’s level are supposed to look like?

A youth system who worked with Branthwaite, including the former academy manager Darren Edmondson, can also share in the credit if cash keeps rolling in. Again, though – few bouquets need be thrown at anyone else until Carlisle are indeed stronger, which also includes coming across more convincingly to a dwindling fanbase.

The current holding position, with veteran owners under a reasonable weight of criticism and financial backers Edinburgh Woollen Mill continuing to keep a long counsel, cannot last forever. “Succession”, a word which has replaced “billionaire” in the bottomless Brunton Park pending tray, needs to be converted. People need to believe in the leadership of the club anew.

They need to be shown, as much as possible, what selling a Jarrad Branthwaite truly means, whether that is clearing debts, paying bills, fixing holes, strengthening the foundations or a gradual rebuild of football spending.

The last occasion Carlisle gained a windfall, through the sales of Brad Potts and Kyle Dempsey and two lucrative cup ties in 2015-16, they front-loaded on summer recruitment and bonuses which nearly (but didn’t) bring promotion. Forget that sort of splurge this time. It has been castigated often enough by those now at the wheel, and is not the way of this new, EWM-flavoured United.

Who channels the money, and more importantly how, are the questions at the top of the list right now. Put simply: only if this deal helps the Blues avoid relegation and change course away from a future of obscurity will it have been worth it. That way, we will be not just wishing Jarrad Branthwaite well on his Premier League adventure, but thanking him for many years to come.