Manchester City chairman Khaldoon Al-Mubarak has revealed how he was not prepared to fork out the £75m Liverpool paid for Virgil van Dijk earlier this year.
After losing John Stones to injury last season, the Citizens were keen on adding defensive reinforcements to Pep Guardiola's squad in the midst of what would become a record-breaking campaign.
While a Southampton player, City chiefs labelled the Netherlands international as one who could potentially be a suitable target.
However, during a recently released Amazon documentary entitled All or Nothing which followed City behind the scenes throughout the season, Al-Mubarak revealed he was simply not prepared to stump up such a fee for Van Dijk.
“Come on, you cannot be serious,” he said while having a conversation with the club's director of football Txiki Begiristain. Ultimately, if it makes sense for us we will do it. If it doesn't make sense, we are perfectly comfortable in walking away.
“To do that, there's only a few clubs in the world that can do that.”
And so it proved that Liverpool were indeed one of those clubs, with Jurgen Klopp's side eventually meeting Southampton's valuation of the defender before utilising the 27-year-old's strengths to reach the Champions League final.
Meanwhile, the reigning Premier League and League Cup champions opted instead to break their, at the time, record transfer fee by landing Aymeric Laporte for £57m, before Riyad Mahrez came in this summer for £60m.
However, Guardiola's selection headache now lies firmly in midfield, with City confirming Kevin De Bruyne will be sidelined for around three months after suffering ligament damage.
Nevertheless, speaking after his side's comprehensive 2-0 victory over Arsenal last weekend, the Catalonian insisted his side are continually improving game by game.
“We have a lot of players with a lack of condition but we are more than two seasons together and know what to do," he said, as quoted by the Express.
"We made a good performance in general and day by day we will get better and better. I am privileged to be manager of Manchester City. They have given me a fantastic squad. I cannot complain for one minute."