The Guardian has an article detailing how a cash strapped Liverpool could only offer a feeble £5m for the American. Now, to be fair, the article’s emphasis is on the club’s criminal waste of money on transfers made under Kenny Dalglish and Damien Comolli. But herein lies the rub.
FSG offered up £20m as a transfer budget plus whatever player sales they could generate which went in acquiring Joe Allen, Fabio Borini, Oussama Assaidi, Samed Yesil, and Nuri Sahin (£3m in loan fees) which added up to £30m. The total raised for players sold including Charlie Adam on deadline and on season long loans was about £8m.
The owners made it clear that any future purchase would be contingent on cost cutting. Brendan Rodgers cleared £8m in wages by selling those players. Which means that the Liverpool coach had about £6m to work with. That was what Spurs paid for Dempsey and it should have been enough for Fulham to release the striker whose preference was to come to Anfield in the first place. It was the topic du jour signing all summer long.
But Liverpool agreed to pay a lions share of Nuri Sahin’s wages which swelled his wage bill to over £4m annually. Sahin earns about £120,000 a week at Real Madrid. A more equitable 60-40 arrangement could have saved them possibly £1,5m or thereabouts. And so the pot of money they potentially had for Dempsey shrank further to where they were forced to offer £5m tops or preferably even less. LFC’s storied history was not enough to make up for that shortfall. Ergo, Sahin’s wages sank Dempsey’s chance of an arrival at Anfield.