Torres, Suarez & now Coutinho: The stars Liverpool have lost to Europe's elite

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The Brazilian is set to join Barcelona, which will make him the latest in a long line of top players to have left Anfield during their title drought

  1. #1 STEVE MCMANAMAN

    As a local lad with silky sills who had come through the youth-team ranks, Steve McMananan was beloved by Liverpool fans but some turned on him after he decided to leave on a free transfer to Real Madrid in 1999. The winger's decision was fully justified, though, with McManaman going to become the most decorated Englishman to have ever played abroad by winning seven trophies during his time at the Santiago Bernabeu, including two Champions Leagues.
  2. #2 MICHAEL OWEN

    Despite persistent hamstring problems in the early stage of his Liverpool career, youth academy product and 1998 World Cup sensation Michael Owen looked set to break every possible goalscoring record at Anfield only to join Real Madrid in 2004 for £8m. Much to the satisfaction of heartbroken Reds supporters, the transfer did not work out for the jet-heeled striker, who spent most of his time on the bench during a solitary season at the Santiago Bernabeu that coincided with Liverpool winning the Champions League.
  3. #3 XABI ALONSO

    Liverpool fans were aghast when manager Rafael Benitez tried to replace Xabi Alonso – one of the heroes of the surprise 2005 Champions League triumph – with Gareth Barry in the summer of 2008. As a result, they understood why the still clearly upset Spanish midfielder elected to depart for Real Madrid the following year. It was also the right call from a sporting perspective, as Alonso went on to win a Liga title and the Champions League with los Blancos.
  4. #4 JAVIER MASCHERANO

    Javier Mascherano became a popular figure at Liverpool because of his tenacity and commitment. His relationship with the club soured in the summer of 2010, however, when he demanded a transfer before reportedly refusing to play in a Champions League game at the start of the season in order to push through a move to Barcelona. Mascherano eventually got his wish and although the Argentine later expressed some regret over the manner of his Anfield exit, his decision has been vindicated by a staggering haul of 17 trophies with the Catalan club.
  5. #5 FERNANDO TORRES

    Liverpool fans were both devastated and furious when Fernando Torres decided to defect to bitter Premier League rivals Chelsea in January 2010. The Reds received a British record fee of £50 million for the Spain striker and he flopped spectacularly at Stamford Bridge, but he still managed to get his hands on the Champions League trophy in 2012.
  6. #6 LUIS SUAREZ

    It was only ever a matter of time before the sensational Luis Suarez would leave Liverpool for Barcelona. The volatile Uruguay international had been persuaded into staying at Anfield for one more season, after very nearly moving to Catalunya in 2013, but he eventually departed 12 months later after being involved in an infamous biting incident at the 2014 World Cup – the third of his controversy-plagued career. Liverpool pocketed £65m for the striker but Barca would argue he has proven worth every cent, given he has helped the club win nine titles, including a treble in his first season.
  7. #7 RAHEEM STERLING

    Raheem Sterling had become a darling of The Kop after breaking into the first team as a teenager before going on to play a key role in the club's thrilling – but ultimately unsuccessful – bid to win the Premier League title in 2013-14. However, he infuriated fans and ex-players alike by doing an unsanctioned interview with the BBC in 2015 in which he revealed that he had turned down a contract extension. He eventually joined Manchester City for a whopping £49m and since the arrival of Pep Guardiola at the Etihad the England starlet's game has gone to a whole other level.
  8. #8 PHILIPPE COUTINHO

    Having been adamant that Philippe Coutinho would not be sold to Barcelona last summer, Liverpool have now finally agreed to sell to the Catalans. A €160 million British record deal is in place, with the transfer repesenting another hammer blow for Reds supporters, who have now become sadly accustomed to seeing their very best players leave for bigger and richer clubs.