Liverpool exploited a Celtic contract clanger to steal Ben Davies from the Scottish champions.
The Preston defender was all set to move north of the border on July 1 after agreeing personal terms on a pre-contract, with his Deepdale deal ending in the summer.
But Sunday People Sport can reveal that Celtic inserted a clause requiring the 25-year-old to be injury-free and fit to play when reporting for duty.
While Davies wavered Liverpool jumped in to agree a deal worth up to £1.6 million with Holland Under-19s defender Sepp van den Berg going the other way on loan.
Celtic boss Neil Lennon was left frustrated, believing he had landed the impressive central- defender for free.
Liverpool swift intervention not only eased manager Jurgen Klopp’s defensive problems, but also made for a whirlwind few hours for Davies.
Preston boss Alex Neil revealed: “The Liverpool move came out of the blue. I think he was shocked. I just said, ‘Listen you’ve just got to make sure you get this across the line’.
“He’s earned his move and when he gets his opportunity he has to show everybody what he’s about.”
Davies was on the bench for Liverpool’s loss against Brighton in midweek.
He could make his debut in Sunday’s titanic clash against Manchester City at Anfield.
Upob signing for the Reds the defender said: “I’m obviously delighted to be here. It’s a huge opportunity.
“Obviously it came as a bit of a surprise when it first came but once you start to get your head around it, the opportunity that is in front of me is incredible.
“I’d be silly to not make the most of it and learn off the players.”