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Coutinho's move to Barca was one of the longest transfer sagas in recent memory, with the Brazilian's potential move initially being seen as a way to stop Neymar leaving before becoming about him replacing his fellow countryman.
The La Liga giants tried for several months to sign the former Inter man that summer before they eventually had to give up and try again the following January.
Leaked emails, via Football Leaks and Der Spiegel, show exactly how hard Barca tried in the summer of 2017 to get their man.
According to the German paper, they bid £72 million on July 20th that year, with Michael Edwards responding to the offer in an email, saying, "Unfortunately, Philippe is not for sale at any price and, as you know, he has only recently extended his contract with us."
Clearly being warned he wasn't 'for sale at any price' didn't put the Spanish side off at all as they responded with a second offer.
This time they improved the bid to €90 million up front and a further €40 million in potential bonuses, quite the jump, at the beginning of August.
This time Edwards was even harsher in his warning, replying, "I would like to kindly ask you to refrain from stalking Philippe both privately and publicly.
"No sum will bring us to reverse our decision."
Even that didn't put Barcelona off as they remained hopeful they could still do a deal for the midfielder, in fact so much so they wrote up a contract for him.
The report claims that a contract dated for August 31st, transfer deadline day, was written up for Coutinho worth €115 million. There was also a €10 million bonus for his agent if the deal was less than €100 million upfront.
In the end the buying club finally gave up their attempts to sign the former Espanyol loanee that summer but did get him the following January.
Ironically Liverpool's complaints for the La Liga side to 'stop stalking' their player came the same summer they had to publicly apologise to Southampton for their pursuit to sign Virgil van Dijk.
In a statement the Reds had to announce they'd ended their interest in the centre back, saying, "Liverpool Football Club would like to put on record our regret over recent media speculation regarding Southampton Football Club and player transfers between the two clubs
"We apologise to the owner, board of directors and fans of Southampton for any misunderstanding regarding Virgil van Dijk. We respect Southampton's position and can confirm we have ended any interest in the player."
Of course they also eventually got their man the following January.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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