Jurgen Klopp claims that he would have liked to re-sign Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona this summer, but the Reds did not have the money to make the deal happen.
The German also revealed that he spoke to the Brazilian in person before he moved to Bayern Munich on loan, telling him that he would be a good fit there – even though he might have dealt his former side, Borussia Dortmund, a Bundesliga title blow in the process.
Speaking to BILD, Klopp said: “Amazing player, we really didn’t want to let him go [in 2018]. Barca forced us financially. It may sound strange, but we didn’t have enough money to get him [back this summer]. We’d already spent all the money we got for him.
“World-class player, really good transfer for Bayern and the Bundesliga. I thought it’s a good fit for both when I first heard about it. I have already told him in person that he and Bayern will be a good fit.
“Not so good for Dortmund! I hope Dortmund will win the title again because it’s getting boring with Bayern winning every year.”
Coutinho has made a decent enough start to life in Germany; certainly enough to suggest he can be more of a success there than he was in Spain.
To hear that the Reds did not have the funds to get the Brazilian is slightly strange, given that all the noises from the club over the transfer window pointed to money being available for the right player.
It is more likely that Klopp means Coutinho was deemed not to represent good value for money this summer, rather than that the club could not afford him.
The German is also known not to like going back to players who have forced their way out, so he might have said something about the finances rather than saying the real truth in order to avoid further questions on it in future and the inevitable suggestion that would follow of the pair having fallen out.