Liverpool have opened talks with Bayern Munich’s 22 year old star Xherdan Shaqiri after growing increasingly frustrated with Southampton over the proposed Adam Lallana move.
German paper Bild has reported that the Reds have begun preliminary talks over a possible move and are willing to offer £16m for the Xherdan Shaqiri
Shaqiri was acquired by Bayern Munich in 2012 for a reported €11.6 million from Swiss side Basle, where he established himself after bursting into the scenes as a teenager in 2009. He was awarded the Swiss Player of the Year in 2011 and 2012. Only 22 years old, the player has already won 13 major trophies that include a Champions League and 2 Bundesliga titles.
The Swiss star had been tipped to replace Franck Ribery at Bayern but has grown impatient at his lack of playing time and is keen to move to Anfield.
Shaqiri started just 10 matches in the Bundesliga last season, contributing to Bayern’s title win mainly from the bench. His quality is such that he still managed to get six goals and two assists in the process.
Liverpool’s Adam Lallana pursuit seems to have hit a halt as Southampton are asking for upto £30m and with sporting director Les Reed saying the England international should stay ‘a little longer’ at St Mary’s.
Nicknamed the ‘Alpine Messi’ Shaqiri made his international debut at just 18-years-old, and is presently a key figure for his nation at the ongoing World Cup. He was the Man of the Match in Switzerland’s 2-1 win over Ecuador.
Brendan Rodgers is desperate to add quality to his squad and sees the flair of Shaqiri as key to his plans to challenge again for the Premier League title. Liverpool also make a return to the Champions League next season and need depth and moreover quality within their ranks. The Swiss star is the ideal player to provide Liverpool that. Primarily a left winger, he can be employed anywhere in the front line and could be a key figure for Rodgers next season. A partnership with Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez could prove to be extremely menacing for any opposition. The Reds need someone for the left flank- a glaring void in their attack last season as Victor Moses failed to establish himself on loan.
THT Verdict- Likely
Shaqiri is younger than Lallana and is also a cheaper alternative. Already so good, he has not even reached the peak of his career and with regular game time at Liverpool, he can realize his immense potential. Lallana has the advantage of being Premier League tested and after his spectacular season at Southampton, would have no problems in immediately being part of Liverpool’s starting 11. But Southampton are playing hardball in the negotiation and Tottenham are constantly lurking behind. With Pochettino’s appointed as the new Spurs boss, there is a likelihood that Lallana be keen to join forces with his old manager. Spurs would also be willing to pay the reported £30m fee and Liverpool have refused to go beyond £25m.
Liverpool had been linked with Shaqiri even in January, after they failed to sign Mohamed Salah, and German reports indicate that the Reds are willing to pay the requisite price for the 22 year old and the player is also keen to join the Merseyside club.