Jurgen Klopp has hinted Liverpool did explore the possibility of bringing Philippe Coutinho back to Liverpool, but were ultimately priced out of a deal for the Brazil playmaker.
Barcelona say Bayern Munich will pay €8.5million (£7.8m) to sign Coutinho on loan for the season, as well as taking on the player’s wages, with the arrangement fixing a permanent deal for the Bundesliga champions at €120m (£109.8m) next summer.
Coutinho was presented before the media on Monday afternoon and admits he is relishing the challenge ahead in the Bundesliga.
However, Coutinho was thought to be offered as a makeweight by Barcelona in a deal to bring Neymar back to the club from PSG, while it seems he was also offered to Liverpool, who sold him to Barcelona for a fee of around £142m in January 2018.
Klopp confirmed as much too when he admitted the club did look into the finances involved in bringing him back to the club, before ultimately deciding they could not afford him.
“It sounds a bit strange, but we could not afford it, we have already spent the cash that we got for him,” Klopp told Goal.
The German also revealed that he did not want to sell Coutinho 19 months ago but Barca’s offer proved too good to turn down.
“We were reluctant to hand him over, but Barcelona forced us with money, so to speak,” he added.
“The move makes sense for both sides. He’s a super player and a great boy. He is a world-class footballer who can change games in the right environment.”
Liverpool used the money generated from Coutinho’s sale to sign both Virgil van Dijk in a £75m deal from Southampton and Alisson Becker, who arrived for a fee of £67m from Roma. Having won the Champions League last season, it’s safe to say their decisions look to have worked out well for the Merseysiders.
Get the latest personalised Reds products on our new TEAMtalk Liverpool shop!