Net Spend FC: FSG's biggest transfer profits at Liverpool
Liverpool have long-been given the tag of ‘Net Spend FC’ under their owners after constantly posting profits in the transfer market and selling players for high fees.
Be it academy graduates or first-team stars, Liverpool almost always got the better end of the deal with their sales, constantly outperforming their rivals in terms of value for money
With the Fenway Sports Group now considering selling Liverpool, FootballTransfers takes a look back at the five biggest profits made by the owners since their arrival in 2010.
Bought for: youth
Sold for: £23.5m
Liverpool have had a long history of selling academy prospects for big money to Premier League sides, none more so than striker Rhian Brewster, who moved to Sheffield United in 2020.
Despite never having played a Premier League game for Liverpool, the Blades splashed £23.5m on the youngster after he scored 10 goals in 20 games on loan at Championship side Swansea.
The move failed to pay off for United and they were relegated, with Brewster failing to score in 27 games and only netting three times in 30 Championship game since. Profit well made for Liverpool.
Bought for: £20m
Sold for: £50m
Although Fernando Torres was signed prior to FSG’s takeover, the Spaniard was one of the first sales made by the new regime when he was sold on deadline day in January 2011.
Torres moved to rivals Chelsea for a then-British record fee of £50m, marking a £30m profit from the initial £20m that Liverpool paid Atletico Madrid for him in 2007.
The move was initially disastrous for Torres as he struggled to recover from the injuries that plagued the end of his Liverpool career and he failed to ever recapture his best form, vindicating the decision to sell him.
Bought for: £22.8m
Sold for: £65m
Part of the reason why Liverpool were content with selling Torres was because they brought in Luis Suarez from Ajax as his replacement for just shy of £23m.
Despite battling controversy throughout his career with the Reds, Suarez was prolific and won the Premier League golden boot and player of the year award during his final season with the club.
Suarez ended up joining Barcelona for £65m in 2014, where he continued to establish himself as one of the best strikers in the world, perhaps suggesting that the £42m profit Liverpool made still wasn’t enough in the grand scheme of things.
Bought for: £2m
Sold for: £49m
Raheem Sterling joined Liverpool having been poached from QPR for £2m as a 15-year-old and the winger was considered the Reds’ brightest prospect during his time at the club.
However, the rise to stardom prompted Sterling to reject a number of contract extensions at Liverpool, resulting in the club selling him to Manchester City in 2015 for £49m, the highest fee for an English player ever at the time.
Sterling’s departure was controversial and fans never forgave him for his decision, however he continued to star for City in the Premier League, winning 11 trophies before joining Chelsea in 2022.
Bought for: £8.5m
Sold for: £105m
The biggest profit of all came from the sale of Philippe Coutinho after the Brazilian signed for Barcelona for an eyewatering £105m, with the fee rising as high as £142m with add-ons.
Coutinho had joined Liverpool from Inter Milan for £8.5m in 2013 and proved to be a revelation during his time at the club, being named the fans’ player of the season on two occasions.
His form prompted Barca to make him the second-most expensive player of all-time in 2018 but the signing proved disastrous, with Coutinho leaving for Aston Villa in 2022 for just £17m.