Liverpool forward Xherdan Shaqiri could be set to depart Anfield this summer after revealing that he wants to play more regularly next season.
“My contract (with) Liverpool expires in 2022, in 2018; I signed a four-year deal. The important thing at this moment in my career is to be able to play regularly, but that hasn’t always been the case in the last three seasons,” Shaqiri admitted.
“This is why I told Liverpool that I feel ready for a new challenge. They accepted my wish and will seriously consider the offers that will come. They will not stop me.
“I’m only 29 years old, I have played in some of the best Leagues in Europe, and I would like to continue being a part of them.”
After Liverpool picked up the Switzerland international for just £13.5m from Stoke City back in 2018, thanks to a relegation release clause in his contract, the deal may have felt like a smart piece of business by the club’s hierarchy.
Shaqiri had cultivated a strong reputation for himself after winning silverware with FC Basel and Bayern Munich before proving himself to be a talented Premier League force throughout his time with the Potters.
However, things have not quite worked out for the diminutive forward under Klopp’s tutelage. A string of niggling injures have kept the creative talent on the sidelines for large spells of his Liverpool career, limiting him to just 18 league starts in three seasons.
It’s not just Shaqiri’s fitness issues which have raised question marks down the years, though, with his attitude and work rate sometimes being called into question – in his final season at Stoke, he gave an interview in which he bemoaned a “lack of quality” among his teammates.
“I’m not a fan of Shaqiri, to be honest with you,” Gary Neville revealed ahead of Switzerland’s World Cup opener against Brazil in 2018.
“I think that was, to be fair, made worse by the fact that he distanced himself from his teammates at Stoke. They were unprofessional last season, there’s no doubt. And he epitomises it.”
With money tight at Anfield, Liverpool have begun offloading some of their unwanted fringe players in order to boost Klopp’s transfer budget, and Shaqiri could be the next one out the door.
His miserly return of just eight goals and nine assists in 63 appearances for the Reds indicates that he’s not good enough to warrant a place in the starting XI, and the funds generated from the £10.8m-rated flop’s sale could provide a significant boost to Liverpool’s coffers to be put towards other targets.