Catalan giants were desperate to land the Brazilian on transfer deadline day but refused to up their £138m offer
The Spanish side launched a last minute £138million bid for the Brazil ace but the Reds turned down the bid.
Philippe Coutinho failed to get his dream move to Barcelona
Barcelona could have signed the Brazilian if they matched Liverpool’s £185m asking price
But Barca were able to hand Coutinho his dream move to the Nou Camp… if they forked out a stunning £185m offer.
Speaking at a press conference, Barcelona’s director of professional sports Albert Soler said: “Yesterday, after weeks of offers and talks, Liverpool valued a player we wanted at €200m.
“We decided against that.”
The Catalan giants were desperate to land a replacement for Neymar after he joined Paris Saint-Germain in a world record £198m switch.
But Soler admits it was harder than expected to make a big-name signing because rivals clubs realised they had a huge transfer warchest.
He added: “The fact he activated a clause unilaterally and left for €222m caused everyone to know that we had money.
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Reds boss Jurgen Klopp will be delighted to keep hold of Philippe Coutinho
Philippe Coutinho returns to Brazil training after overcoming injury
“We managed to avoid jeopardising the club’s heritage and finances. We won’t play in this inflated market.”
Coutinho was desperate to join Barcelona and took every measure to push through a move including handing in a transfer request.
Barcelona started the bidding at £72m in July and gradually increased their offers to £90m and finally £138m before calling it quits.
And according to Mundo Deportivo, Coutinho was so devastated that Liverpool had rejected Barcelona’s final offer that he “broke down in tears in front of his Brazil team-mates.”
Whether or not Coutinho now reintegrates into the Liverpool squad remains to be seen but he will most likely play a key part under Jurgen Klopp.