Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - Liverpool - EX­CLU­SIVE BY HARRY PRATT

TOT­TEN­HAM pulled the plug on their loan swoop for Philippe Coutinho be­cause the ten-month deal would have cost them £40mil­lion.

That eye-wa­ter­ing sum for a tem­po­rary trans­fer was enough to end the north Lon­don­ers’ in­ter­est in sign­ing the Barcelona mis­fit (above).

The Span­ish club were de­mand­ing a whop­ping £30m loan fee for the Brazil play­maker. And with the ex-Liver­pool man’s monthly wage at the Nou Camp near­ing £1m it took the pack­age to £40m.

Spurs chief Daniel Levy was never go­ing to cough up that sort of money for a player whose form has dipped dra­mat­i­cally since his £130m switch to La Liga 18 months ago.

Barcelona made a last­gasp at­tempt to get shot of Coutinho by of­fer­ing him to Arsenal, but the Gun­ners gave the same mes­sage, telling them he was far too ex­pen­sive. ME­SUT OZIL will have to take a mas­sive pay cut if he wants to re­build his ca­reer as Wayne Rooney’s re­place­ment at DC United.

The Arsenal play­maker is cur­rently the sec­ond­high­est-paid player in the Pre­mier League be­hind Alexis Sanchez, earn­ing £350,000 a week.

The Gun­ners are keen to get him off the pay­roll and this week his rep­re­sen­ta­tives are due to fly to Wash­ing­ton for talks with DC bosses.

Rooney takes up a player-coach role at Derby in Jan­uary, but Arsenal could have to fund part of Ozil’s deal with salaries in the MLS nowhere near the Pre­mier League.

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