Brendan Rodgers admitted that he offered Gylfi Sigurdsson no more money at Liverpool than he had at Swansea, as he reflected on losing the Iceland midfielder to Tottenham Hotspur.
When Rodgers was Swansea manager he agreed a deal to buy Sigurdsson, 22, who had been on loan there. But when the Northern Irishman went to Liverpool he offered him the same deal, and lost out on the signing.
"We agreed a deal for him to go to Swansea and that was wrapped up," Rodgers said yesterday. "I then became the Liverpool manager and that then wasn't something that was going to happen at Swansea so he then had a choice of where he wanted to go.
"I knew what the market was and I wasn't prepared to pay anything over what I had known was agreed before.
"Liverpool would have provided Gylfi with a wonderful opportunity to perform with a manager that he knows and at a club which is a real footballing institution. But he's decided to go to Tottenham."
Sigurdsson had been excellent at Swansea under Rodgers, who had previously managed him at Reading. "He wasn't playing at [Bundesliga side] Hoffenheim, I brought him to Swansea and he did very well for me there, scoring seven goals in 19 games and was very good," Rodgers said.
"I wish him the best, he's a good kid and there's no ill feeling. We've got other targets and we'll move on."
After missing out on one of his first targets, Rodgers is keen to bring in more players to Liverpool. The 39-year-old has been tasked with revamping a side that finished a disappointing eighth place in the Premier League last year, one position and four points behind local rivals Everton.
"I believe there's one or two areas that I'll need to improve on, but overall the core of the group is strong," said. "You want to add the other pieces that can complete your jigsaw and that's something that we're doing over a period of time.
"We're doing a lot of work off the field in terms of potential players to come in," he added.