Liverpool: 8 times clubs regretted breaking transfer records for Reds' players


Liverpool have long been renowned for leading a charmed life in the transfer market when it comes to offloading unwanted players.

Much of the credit for that is given to their celebrated sporting director, Michael Edwards. The man himself keeps a very low public profile, but behind the scenes has been lauded for masterminding some fantastic business for the Reds.

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Time after time, it seems, the Anfield outfit has been able to command considerable sums for players considered surplus to requirements by bosses.

This trend, however, has existed for such a period that it isn't just a case of one man having the midas touch when it comes to negotiations.



For more than a decade, clubs have been breaking their transfer records in order to sign Liverpool players, and - more often than not - it hasn't ended well for the purchasing party.

Here, per, are eight examples of this eerie phenomenon.

Peter Crouch (Portsmouth - 2008 - £11m)

As it turned out, when Portsmouth signed the giant England striker in July 2008 for an eight-figure sum, they were on the verge of having serious financial problems, This meant that Crouch's spell at Pompey would be limited to just one season, before they were forced to offload him to Tottenham at a loss. All in all, the deal was not a positive one for the Fratton Park club.


Fernando Torres (Chelsea - 2011 - £50m)

At his peak, 'El Nino' was a fabulous player for Liverpool and, had he taken that form with him to Stamford Bridge, would have been worth every penny of the £50m that the Blues paid for him. The problem, of course, is that he didn't. A shadow of the player he had been at Anfield, Torres managed just 20 goals in 110 games for his new club. A massive failure for Chelsea by any standards.

Andy Carroll (West Ham - 2013 - £15m)

Despite the fact that Carroll had hardly set the world on fire at Liverpool, West Ham were somehow convinced that the injury-prone Geordie was worth taking a fairly hefty punt on in 2013. It, predictably, did not pay off. Carroll managed only 26 goals in 102 games during a frustrating spell in East London, where he constantly struggled for fitness.

Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace - 2016 - £27m)

Initially, it looked like this move had escaped the curse. Benteke banged in 15 goals during his debut season at Palace (still a Premier League record for the Selhurst Park club) and things appeared to be going well. The fact that the Belgian has only scored 16 times in the following four campaigns tells its own depressing story though.


Jordan Ibe (Bournemouth - 2016 - £15m)

Following an impressive loan spell the season prior, the Cherries decided to smash their existing transfer record to secure the services of winger Ibe on a permanent basis. Within a few months of the deal going through, though, Ibe found himself dropped to the bench and would never found his groove on the south coast. His time with the club came to an end last year when his contract expired. Ibe scored just three goals in 78 games during his spell with Bournemouth.

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Dominic Solanke (Bournemouth - 2019 - £19m)

Apparently, a couple of seasons was enough for Bournemouth to get over their misfire with Ibe, as they once again did business with Liverpool in January 2019 - this time offering them a massive £19m for promising young striker Solanke. In fairness, this deal didn't work out quite as badly as Ibe's. However, Bournemouth were still relegated from the Premier League last season - the exact scenario Solanke was bought to help try and prevent. Since his move, he has notched 18 goals in 82 games and continues to be a key member of a Bournemouth side hopeful of escaping the Championship this term. 

Rhian Brewster (Sheffield United - 2020 - £23m)

A similar tale to that of Solanke. Sheffield United broke the bank to obtain the services of Brewster in October last year - in the hope that he could ensure their Premier League status. He couldn't. Thus far in his spell with the Blades, Brewster has just to score a single goal either, making this currently one of the worst deals overall on this list.


Philippe Coutinho (Barcelona - 2018 - £142m)

In hindsight, a truly terrible piece of business. The La Liga giants forked out an astonishing £142m for Coutinho in January 2018 - and have had a truly shocking return on that investment. The Brazilian has never settled at the Camp Nou, making just 12 appearances for the club last season. The Blaugrana would dearly love to get Coutinho off their wage bill at this point - and are open to taking an astronomical loss on the player.

There you have it. In excess of £300m laid out on eight Liverpool players who have done anything but set the world on fire for their new clubs. A stark warning for any team thinking of breaking their transfer record to land an Anfield squad member this summer.

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