It appears that Liverpool were so put off by Barcelona’s pursuit of Philippe Coutinho that the Premier League took preventative measures from the Spanish side raiding the club again.
During the negotiations last January when Liverpool reluctantly sanctioned the sale of Coutinho to Barca for £142 million, Liverpool sporting director Michael Edwards insisted on a €100 million (£89m) premium on top of any transfer fee if Barcelona try to sign any more Liverpool players in the next three years.
That means if Barca ever moved for Mohamed Salah, whose current market value would conservatively value him at £150 million, the price for Barcelona would be £239 million.
The move effectively safeguards Liverpool from seeing more of their top stars cherry-picked by the La Liga outfit, with Barca having taken Javier Mascherano and Luis Suarez from Anfield since 2010.
Coutinho made the switch to Barcelona in January after months of speculation leading up to the deal, and Liverpool were not happy that some of the club’s players spoke openly about wanting to play with Coutinho before signing, including Ivan Rakitic in an interview with Sky Sports.
They were said to be furious when Barcelona’s shirt sponsors, Nike, announced Coutinho’s arrival weeks before it was formally agreed.