Football

Philippe Coutinho.

Leaked emails prove Barcelona lied about Liverpool offering Coutinho for €200m

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It's been a case of back to reality for Philippe Coutinho in recent weeks after seeing his dream move to Barcelona blocked by Liverpool over the summer.

Barca made three bids over the course of the transfer window, the third reaching £114 million, but failed in their attempts to sign the Brazilian.

The Blaugrana will reportedly reignite their interest next summer - or perhaps even in January - but for now, Coutinho remains a Liverpool player and must live with that.

He made his highly-anticipated return against Sevilla in the Champions League on September 13 and then started against Burnley three days later.

Coutinho looked somewhat off the pace in both games and produced another underwhelming performance during the 2-0 defeat to Leicester City in midweek.

It will no doubt take time for the 25-year-old to come to terms with what happened in the summer transfer window, but one player who's happy to see him stay is Sadio Mane.

"It was not only important to me, but also to the whole club, that Phil is staying here," said Mane earlier this week.

"He is one of our best players, an important player, and we are happy to see him stay with us."

What can't have helped matters for Coutinho was when Liverpool reportedly priced Barcelona out of a move by offering him for a crazy fee on deadline day.

Leicester City v Liverpool - Carabao Cup Third Round

That was according to club director Albert Soler, who 'revealed' in a press conference that they were told they could have Coutinho for €200 million. Liverpool, of course, rejected Soler's claim.

Soler's revelation left a few people scratching their heads; why would Liverpool name a price to Barcelona if they were so against selling Coutinho?

Well, it would appear that Soler lied and not once did Liverpool say Coutinho was available for a certain price.

Leaked emails published by German newspaper Der Spiegel, per Football Leaks, seem to prove that Liverpool didn't quote Barcelona €200 million for Coutinho.

As relayed by the Mirror, Liverpool responded to Barca's first bid of £72 million on July 20 by saying Coutinho was "not for sale at any price".

FBL-EUR-C1-LIVERPOOL-SEVILLA

And when the Catalonians returned with a second bid of £90 million, Liverpool's sporting director, Michael Edwards, took over. His email read:

"I ask you amicably to stop harassing Coutinho publicly and privately. No amount of money will change our minds."

It's the second half of Edwards' email that proves Barcelona lied about Liverpool valuing Coutinho at €200 million, given they stated "no amount of money will change our minds".

Der Spiegel also revealed that Coutinho stood to earn €115 million (£101m) in wages over the course of five years had he joined Barcelona.

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