Football: Liverpool initially wanted £176 million for Philippe Coutinho before price cut, says Barca V-P

Barcelona's new midfielder Philippe Coutinho posing with his jersey during a news conference announcing his arrival at the team, on Jan 8, 2018.
Barcelona's new midfielder Philippe Coutinho posing with his jersey during a news conference announcing his arrival at the team, on Jan 8, 2018. PHOTO: REUTERS

BARCELONA (REUTERS) - Barcelona signed midfielder Philippe Coutinho because they were given a significant discount on the price Liverpool were asking for him in the last transfer window, vice-president Jordi Mestre said on Monday (Jan 8).

Coutinho became the third most expensive player in football history when he signed a five-and-a-half year contract with Barca on Monday following a £142 million ($256.5 million) deal between the clubs.

Barcelona director Albert Soler said in September the club abandoned their pursuit of the Brazilian playmaker last year because Liverpool were asking for £176 million.

"The club has always been interested in signing Coutinho, the difference to last summer is that there was a big cut in price," Mestre told reporters on Monday at Coutinho's official presentation.

"We won't state the numbers because Liverpool don't want us to, but there was a big price cut."