Moises Caicedo’s agent admits Liverpool represented a ‘more stable project’ than Chelsea and says Jurgen Klopp’s personal approach left the midfielder ‘dizzy’.
The Ecuador international was at the centre of a transfer tug-of-war between Liverpool and Chelsea in the final month of the summer transfer window and was granted permission from Brighton to undergo a medical with Klopp’s side after their £110 million offer was accepted.
However, Chelsea were given time to submit an improved bid and ended up agreeing a British-record £115m fee with Brighton.
Caicedo’s representative, Manuel Sierra, insists the midfielder was intent on joining Chelsea due to their persistent interest since the January window but concedes that Liverpool’s proposal was difficult to ignore.
When asked about Caicedo’s transfer saga involving Chelsea and Liverpool in the summer, Sierra told Futbol sin Cassette: ‘It’s true that the Arsenal thing in January was an offer that, at time, didn’t seem insurmountable, Moises fought for his dream at that moment, maybe it wasn’t the time as I’ve always said because it’s true that with Brighton there was always talk about the issue of leaving, since we signed our representation contract.
‘There was always talk of leaving in the summer market, of course in those 10 days according to the strict representation contract, we came to the fore to negotiate. There was no time but I think it was a moment that we had to try, we had the verbal commitment at all times that it was good that they wanted to improve the conditions for Moises, that they wanted him to be calm so that he could play the rest of the season and that in the summer he was going to leave.
‘It’s true that Chelsea were always there since January, what happened is that in January they couldn’t pay, they couldn’t go crazy because they had to go with one or the other, they couldn’t go with both of them and I didn’t know what Brighton were going to ask for, Brighton were not going to sell even for £1 billion.
‘The issue of not going to Liverpool instead of Chelsea was also very questioned, the offers were similar in every way, the issue is that due to a question of values and a question of principles and of giving the floor to someone, when Liverpool’s offer arrived, Brighton were asked for time so that Chelsea could match it, they did that, they surpassed it and he ended up at Chelsea because he had given the word to Chelsea and he told them for quite some time.
‘Liverpool appeared very late and with a word given to Chelsea, with everything agreed, it was said that Moises Caicedo himself was already training in a Chelsea camp [before officially signing]. Let’s be clear, he never did anything while he had contact with Brighton, the only thing he did was go to the locker room to pick up everything and he told them clearly, ‘I’m not going to play here again’, to make it clear. It was the only way to make it clear because in the end you always talk to a teammate, the teammate goes to the coach or goes to someone from the board and they say, ‘no, there is a possibility that Moises will stay’, time goes by and that’s what we didn’t want so a month later, when he came back from the situation in New York, he was there for the pre-season with Brighton, I travelled there and met with the owner of Brighton and the sporting director and there between the four of us we talked about something that we later saw a lot of reality. This drastic decision was made because it was the only way to be able to leave.
‘Liverpool were always interested. We always had meetings during those months between January and May but since May we never heard from them again and of course we were surprised that suddenly they appeared with something [an offer] that they said that they couldn’t do.
‘The first thing we are told is, ‘tomorrow you have to go to Liverpool until you pass a medical examination’. Of course, what is our reaction going to be if we have not negotiated, we have not spoken, we have not seen anything since May.
‘The problem was Brighton but when they tell us tomorrow, ‘you can go to Liverpool’, well of course the reaction is fine but the funny thing is that they didn’t tell us, they told us to undergo a medical with Liverpool without having an agreement, without having said, ‘yes’, even the club wrote to Moises, ‘with permission from Brighton’, and so on, but our phone conversations were clear at all times, we were clear, as long as Chelsea offered the same conditions that Liverpool could do with Brighton, and as I say they surpassed it, so there was no complaint.
‘It is very complicated, imagine that Jurgen Klopp is writing to you, that Liverpool is calling you, we are talking about something very big, that is, one of the best teams in the world, just like Chelsea, and with a more established and more stabilised project than what Chelsea have today, which is a very ambitious project with a view to two, three years ahead.
‘When Liverpool came and approached in that way, obviously Moises gets dizzy, I get dizzy myself, but Chelsea were by our side at all times asking us to go, they wanted an hour so that we could tell Brighton, so that they could match the offer and they gave them an hour and it ended in two days of negotiation.’