Barcelona: Luis Suarez cost £65m
Barcelona vice-president Jordi Mestre has maintained that his club paid Liverpool 65 million pounds for Luis Suarez this summer -- 10 million pounds less than earlier reports in England had suggested.
Suarez was presented to the media as a Barca player on Tuesday, after making a 14-minute debut appearance in Monday evening's 6-0 Trofeo Gamper friendly win over Club Leon at the Camp Nou.
During the Uruguayan's unveiling, Mestre laid out the Catalan club's version of how the deal was agreed.
"The release clause was 75 million pounds sterling and finally we reached an agreement for 65 million pounds, which is about 80 million euros," the Blaugrana director said. "His [new] clause has been set at 200 million euros."
At the time of the transfer, it had been widely reported that Liverpool had only agreed to sell Suarez for the full 75 million pounds stipulated in the clause.
Pressed for clarification, Mestre said: "The release clause was 75 million pounds. We were able to lower the price through the good work of our executives [during the negotiations] and because Suarez wanted to come here. We agreed 65 million pounds."
Mestre also suggested in his opening remarks that Suarez had taken a pay-cut to leave Liverpool and join the Catalan club.
"I wish to say we appreciate Luis' willingness to come here," he said. "If he is here, it is because he has made a great effort, as much financial as personal, to come here."
Liverpool have never disclosed the fee publicly, but Anfield sources have maintained to ESPN FC that Barcelona did meet the 75 million pound release clause in the contract Suarez signed in December 2013.
ESPN FC correspondent Mike Whalley contributed to this report.