Liverpool owner John W. Henry has lambasted Arsenal's latest efforts to sign striker Luis Suarez after the Gunners reportedly submitted a £40m + £1 bid for the Uruguay international.
The Reds are understood to have rejected the bid which sought to activate a clause in the player's contract whereby Arsenal would be free to start negotiations with Suarez.
However, some doubt remains over the existence of such a clause and whether Liverpool merely have to inform the player of the bid rather than automatically accept it, but their subsequent rejection is a further sign the Merseysiders are treating any interest with contempt.
Suarez has continually stated his desire to leave the Premier League this summer after his vilification in the British press following a spate of high-profile on-field incidents, the latest of which saw him banned for 10 matches for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic.
But since interest from Bayern Munich and Real Madrid has cooled, Suarez has been subject to advances from Arsenal, who had a bid of £30m rejected earlier this month.
Brendan Rodgers insists Suarez is not for sale and that Liverpool's valuation of the ex-Ajax forward, who scored 30 goals for Liverpool last season, is similar to that of fellow-Uruguayan Edinson Cavani - a £55m signing for Paris Saint Germain.
The ambiguity surrounding Suarez's contract, which has three years to run, has led Arsenal to making a renewed offer for the wantaway forward which intends to test clauses within his deal and the relationship between Liverpool and the player's representatives.
Owner Henry has subsequently moved to criticise Arsenal's apparent tactics in the transfer window.
The American businessman wrote on Twitter: "What do you think they're smoking over there at Emirates?"
Henry and chairman Tom Werner have consistently defended Suarez throughout his two-and-a-half-year spell at Liverpool which has been littered with controversial episodes.
Suarez was banned for eight matches by The Football Association after being found to have racially abused Manchester United's Patrice Evra in October 2011, while Rodgers has been forced to defend the player amid accusations of diving and cheating.
The case involving Ivanovic during the back-end of last season, which will see Suarez serve the remaining six games of his ban at the start of the new campaign should he remain in English football, sparked a media storm and further scrutiny on his future with Liverpool, who failed for a fourth successive season to qualify for the Champions League.