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“I begged…” - Liverpool target Steven Gerrard ‘wanted’ once left in tears after failed Anfield move

“I begged…” - Liverpool target Steven Gerrard ‘wanted’ once left in tears after failed Anfield move

He was in tears.

Liverpool explored a move for Yevhen Konoplyanka in 2014 only for the midfielder to be devastated by the deal falling through.

For every successful signing, there is one that gets away.

While Liverpool fans will be pleased with the arrivals of Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai this summer, they will forever wonder how Jude Bellingham would have fared had he chosen an Anfield move over Real Madrid.

And in January 2014, the Reds desperately tried to sign Konoplyanka, only for the transfer to fall through and Adam Lallana, Lazar Markovic and Emre Can arriving as alternatives.

The winger had already been crowned Ukrainian Footballer of the Year on three occasions when Liverpool came calling.

The Anfield club, then managed by Brendan Rodgers, had missed out on a certain FC Basel player called Mohamed Salah, who agreed to join Chelsea, and turned their attention to Konoplyanka.

The Ukrainian was plying his trade for Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk at the time, where he had a buy-out clause of £16million which Liverpool were prepared to match.

But there was one rather major snag - Dnipro president, Ihor Kolomoyskyi refused to sign off the deal in a desperate attempt to hang on to his star player.

Konoplyanka cried at failed Liverpool move

On the Liverpool move falling through, Konoplyanka told Wezlo: “I was crying. A delegation of serious people from Liverpool came to Dnipropetrovsk. We ate dinner. They were (willing) to pay as much as (Dnipro owner) Ihor Kolomoyskyi wanted.

“Martin Skrtel wrote me a message: ‘We are waiting for you’. Steven Gerrard also gave me his blessing.

“I used to go to Kolomoyskyi: ‘Please, please, please, let me go. It will make my dream come true’. I begged. Liverpool offered 25m euros (£18m). But I didn’t feel disappointed about going to Sevilla (instead).”

In a separate interview with Tribuna, Dnipro chief executive Andriy Stetsenko explained his side of the story.

He said: “For Konoplyanka, whom Liverpool wanted to buy, a specific amount was assigned. The British club fought until the last (minute to sign him). Then their representatives flew to us on a private jet for the final stage of negotiations. In case of a positive outcome, Konoplyanka was supposed to fly away with them.

“(Liverpool) did not agree with the figure that was asked of them. Perhaps they thought that a private jet would make some impression. That showed the seriousness of their intentions. (But Dnipro) did not go for a price reduction. As a result, Liverpool flew away with nothing.”

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Football, Transfers, Liverpool, Premier League, Steven Gerrard