Liverpool sent two offers – the second worth £64million – in a bid to sign then-Monaco winger Thomas Lemar in the summer of 2017, according to a report.
The Daily Express says the Reds’ pursuit came amid Philippe Coutinho making clear his wishes to move to Barcelona.
Liverpool would eventually keep hold of the Brazilian until January the following year, when they earned £142million from his sale.
However, the Anfield club reportedly worried about losing Coutinho before the start of the season and did not want to end the transfer window without him – or a replacement.
Therefore, Liverpool transfer chief Michael Edwards initially bid £55million for Lemar, which the French club rejected.
As such, the Reds then submitted a second offer of £64million, with time running out – and Lemar wanted the move.
However, he was unaware of developments while on international duty with France. What’s more, Arsenal also registered interest, with Alexis Sanchez wanted by Manchester City.
Monaco’s asking price increased, though, to £90million and Lemar stayed put, signing for Atletico Madrid a year later.
Liverpool responded by reaching the final stages of a deal to sign Nabil Fekir in 2018.
The then-Lyon midfielder had pictures taken in a Liverpool kit but the move collapsed after the Reds expressed concerns over his injury history.
Since missing out on both Lemar and Fekir, however, Liverpool have strengthened elsewhere.
The Reds used the £142million from Coutinho‘s sale to buy Virgil van Dijk and Alisson Becker, who have transformed Jurgen Klopp’s defence.
Netherlands captain Van Dijk has played every Premier League game since the start of last season.
LIVERPOOL RETRUN TO ACTION ON SUNDAY
Liverpool resume their long-awaited quest for the Premier League title on Sunday against rivals Everton.
Klopp’s side need two wins to claim the title and could do so against Crystal Palace on Wednesday.
Speaking ahead of Sunday’s game, the German manager admitted he was worried about the future of his side’s season.