Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has claimed that Liverpool and Roma are have the same owner.
He made the claim after revealing that his side made an offer to sign Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson from Roma before he left for Liverpool in a £67 million deal which made him the most expensive goalkeeper in the world at the time.
The record is currently being held by Chelsea goalie Kepa Arrizabalaga. Alisson became the second Roma player to join Liverpool after Mohammed Salah.
Roma proved tough in the deal for Alisson as they felt they had been ripped off when Salah joined the Reds for £36m in the summer of 2017.
The two clubs are owned by Americans. James Pallotta oversees the affairs at Roma, while John W Henry’s Fenway Sports Group controls Liverpool.
However, De Laurentiis who is no stranger to controversies believes that the relationship between the two teams is more controversial than it appears.
He suggested that they are breaking UEFA rules which state that one owner cannot have more than one team in a European competition.
“Roma were dismantled and reassembled, I can’t evaluate them: I wouldn’t have sold Alisson, not even for €100m (£90m/$114m),” he told Corriere dello Sport.
“I had offered €60m (£54m/$68m) for him and they didn’t want to give him to us… But then I understood that he would go to Liverpool.
“I’ve always suspected that the real owner of Liverpool is also that of Rome. A little bird whispered it in my ear a few years ago. And if that is true, with a shared ownership they could not both compete in the Champions League.”