Lyon turned down the chance to sign Emile Heskey after refusing to meet Liverpool's £11m asking price.
Heskey was on target nine times for Liverpool last season
The French side were reportedly offered Heskey's services but wanted to take him on a season-long loan rather than in a permanent deal.
However, Liverpool manager Gerard Houllier is believed to have wanted a straight cash transaction so the move fell through.
"We were indeed interested by Emile Heskey but we wanted a loan," Lyon chairman Jean-Michel Aulas told L'Equipe.
"We accepted to pay the player's whole wages. But we thought a lot about why
Gerard Houllier wanted to let such a player go."
Houllier has since backed Heskey and assured the 25-year-old that he had a future at Anfield.
The England international has been in good form during Liverpool's pre-season campaign.
But Heskey will under pressure to improve on last season's goal haul when he scored only nine goals in 51 appearances for Liverpool.