Stephan El Shaarawy is one of Serie A’s highest-rated young talents, having taken the division’s Young Player of the Year award in 2012 for his 16-goal haul with AC Milan. The prolific return also saw the Italian starlet ranked 52nd in The Guardian’s 100 best footballers in the world.
But since the noteworthy accolade, the 21 year-old’s career has continually backtracked; the San Siro arrival of Mario Balotelli in January 2013 saw the goals dry up – Shaarawy has only netted three times for AC Milan since – and his current campaign has been dogged by injury, the latest sideline spell being a 10-week layoff after failing to recover from foot surgery.
Nonetheless, the Italy international is a signing that would thoroughly excite the Liverpool fans, due to his preceding reputation throughout Europe as a youngster with world-class potential.
Best described as a left forward, Shaarawy’s acquisition would also address two key gaps in the Anfield roster, namely the need for a natural winger and a lack of adequate cover for in-form striking duo Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge.
The ten-cap Italy prodigy has recently stated that he wants to stay with Rossoneri and become a central figure in Clarence Seedorf’s plans, but the club seem to have a different opinion, having accepted a bid from an unnamed Russian club in the January window.
It’s believed Shaarawy’s price tag lays somewhere between the £15million-£20million mark, and the talented youngster ticks all the customary boxes of Brendan Rodgers’ usual signings.