Barcelona president Joan Laporta has revealed that the Catalan giants attempted and failed to sign Luis Diaz earlier this year.
After scoring 16 goals in 28 games for Porto during the first half of the 2021-22 season, the Colombia international piqued the interest of clubs all over Europe.
Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur were among the clubs linked with a January move for Diaz, but Liverpool eventually won the race to sign him.
Jurgen Klopp’s side are thought to have paid Porto an initial €47m (£41m) for Diaz, which could rise to as much as €60m (£52.4m) if all performance-related add-ons are met..
However, things could have gone very differently for the 25-year-old, with Laporta now admitting that Barcelona were also interested in signing him during the winter transfer window.
However, La Blaugrana’s volatile financial situation has been well-documented in the past year, and their financial difficulties meant that they were unable to compete with Liverpool for the winger’s signature.
“Liverpool got there first. We considered signing him at one point, but we still had an economic situation to resolve, to reverse, and they beat us to it “As reported by 90Min, Laporta told Mundo Deportivo..
He’s a great player and he belongs to Liverpool, and I won’t say anything else about it, but yes, I admit it, when he moved from Porto to Liverpool, we had a conversation with his representative, but Liverpool was already well ahead of us.”
After failing to entice Diaz away from Porto, Barcelona moved to sign Raphinha from Leeds United and also signed Ousmane Dembele to a new contract at Camp Nou.
Xavi’s squad also includes Ferran Torres, Ansu Fati, and Memphis Depay, though the former and latter are facing uncertain futures with the La Liga giants..
Diaz quickly became a fan favorite at Liverpool, scoring six goals and setting up five more in his first half-season while also impressing with effervescent displays out wide.
In his debut season, the South American won the FA Cup and EFL Cup, and he also started the 2022-23 season strongly with four goals and three assists in 11 Premier League and Champions League games.
Diaz has now missed Liverpool’s last ten matches in all competitions due to the knee injury he sustained in the Reds’ 3-2 defeat to Arsenal last month, but there is hope that he will be able to return before the New Year..
During the World Cup break, Klopp’s team will travel to Dubai to compete in the Dubai Super Cup, and Diaz is expected to play a role after beginning to run at the AXA Training Centre last week.
Liverpool will face Lyon in the Dubai Super Cup on December 11 before facing AC Milan three days later. Arsenal will also be present in the four-team tournament..
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