Leaked emails show how Liverpool asked Barcelona to “stop harassing Philippe Coutinho” during the La Liga club’s pursuit of the Brazilian midfielder this summer.
Barcelona were desperate to rope in Coutinho in order to replace Neymar, who moved to PSG on a world-record transfer, but the Catalan giants saw three back-to-back bids for the Brazilian turned down as Liverpool refused to sell their prized asset.
And now German newspaper Der Spiegel has published the discussions between the two clubs.
The emails show that Barca’s first offer for Coutinho was around £72million, which was turned down by Liverpool on July 20 as the club insisted that their player was “not for sale at any price”.
Barcelona then came back with an improved offer of £90m in early August but Liverpool sporting director Michael Edwards, said: “I ask you amicably to stop harassing Coutinho publicly and privately. No amount of money will change our minds.”
The La Liga giants then saw a third bid of £114m rejected towards the fag end of the summer transfer window.
Der Spiegel, who worked with Football Leaks, revealed that Coutinho could have taken home a staggering €115m (£101m) each year for five years.
The Brazilian midfielder’s agent was set to receive receive €10m (£9m) if Barcelona could have landed Coutinho for a transfer fee not more than €100m.