Back in July, The Express were one of a number of publications to report that a deal taking Lyon attacker Nabil Fekir to Liverpool was close to being completed.
Despite rumours flying around for weeks on end and speculation about Fekir’s arrival at Anfield relentlessly gathering pace, the move ultimately failed to come to fruition and the 25-year-old remained with the Ligue 1 outfit.
The Reds still enjoyed a busy transfer window, as Jurgen Klopp saw Alisson Becker, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri all join his squad for a combined cost of £177 million – a greater outlay than any other Premier League club, as reported by Sky Sports.
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Each of those new signings has brought something positive to Anfield, but Shaqiri’s impact has probably been the biggest surprise. Perhaps, had Fekir got his move to Anfield too, Shaqiri wouldn’t have ever gotten his chance to shine on Merseyside.
The Swiss playmaker joined Liverpool from relegated Stoke City in the summer for a fee of around £13.5 million. Had Liverpool already landed Fekir though, they may have seen no need to trigger Shaqiri’s release clause with the Potters at all.
However, even if Shaqiri had already joined the Reds prior to the successful signing of Fekir, the arrival of the 20-cap France international would likely have pushed him down the pecking order. So, either way, Fekir’s move to Liverpool would surely have prevented Shaqiri from proving his true worth to the club.
Perhaps, then, missing out on the World Cup winner wasn’t such a disaster after all. Liverpool’s current place at the top of the Premier League table certainly suggests they’re coping well enough without the Lyon man.