Chelsea took a jab at Liverpool for their role in the Moises Caicedo transfer saga when announcing the midfielder on Monday evening.
The Stamford Bridge club officially hijacked the deal for a British record £115m fee, outdoing the Reds' own accepted offer of £110m as of Friday morning.
Chelsea had been hunting for his signature from as early as January so in reality the attempts of Jurgen Klopp and Anfield chiefs to lure the player were outdone by months and months of groundwork to agree what has now been confirmed to be a mega-money eight-year contract with the option of a ninth.
In fact the only reason this scenario played out is because the Londoners had bartered for a lower fee than Brighton's original £100m asking price in the first place, and after being made to pay £15m higher than the stated fee they took aim at Liverpool's attempts to steal their long-term target.
It’s only ever been Chelsea. pic.twitter.com/LCYf6A2BQr— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) August 14, 2023
Teasing Caicedo's announcement on Monday at 6:30pm BST, Chelsea released a video of the Ecuadorian and his mother recreating a childhood photo in which they are sitting in the boot of a parked car. In the image, he can be seen in his new club's home shirt from the 2019/20 season.
The accompanying caption was a hard-hitting five-word message: "It's only ever been Chelsea."
Backing up this sly dig in his first message to his new club's website, Caicedo said: "I am so happy to join Chelsea! I am so excited to be here at this big club and I didn’t have to think twice when Chelsea called me, I just knew I wanted to sign for the club. It’s a dream come true to be here and I can’t wait to get started with the team."
"Moises possesses a rare midfield skill set and is a player we've been targeting for some time. We believe he will make a significant impact at Stamford Bridge this season – and in the years ahead," was the official statement added by Chelsea co-sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley.