Arnautovic should tip Shaqiri race in West Ham’s favour

Xherdan Shaqiri will probably be linked to every club under the sun by the end of this summer, but his best possible destination is the London Stadium.

What’s the story?

According to reports this week, Liverpool have joined the race for Stoke’s Shaqiri, but Everton and West Ham have been mooted as potential suitors too.

The Toffees have been extensively linked with a move for Shaqiri since his £12m relegation clause became known, as Marco Silva looks to rebuild his squad with more firepower.

New director of football Marcel Brands is looking to trim the squad and wage bill at Goodison, so a bargain deal for Shaqiri courtesy of the Potters going down could be perfect for the Blues as they look to be smart rather than noisy in the transfer market.

Many fans want Ademola Lookman to get a chance on the wing, but with Theo Walcott not making much impact and Yannick Bolasie struggling for form, Shaqiri would be a valuable addition for Silva and Everton whether Lookman breaks into the first team or not.

After plenty of drab performances under Sam Allardyce, a player like Shaqiri who can get fans off their seats with a moment of brilliance could be perfect at Goodison, but would he be even better at West Ham?

The Hammers were also linked with the Swiss international in May, and now a report from Football London claims the Hammers are one of several teams on “red alert” for the winger.

While Everton could certainly use some of Shaqiri’s creativity, his chemistry with Marko Arnautovic and the experience of Manuel Pellegrini would make him a much better fit in East London.

Why West Ham?

Perhaps the biggest negative against Shaqiri right now is his attitude. Eight goals and seven assists for a struggling Stoke side is a fantastic return, but the 26 year-old’s work rate is certainly a concern, as he tends to be fantastic for a game or two and then switch off for the next five.

Pellegrini has the experience and nous to add some consistency and drive to the wing wizard’s game, and the presence of Arnautovic could have a huge effect as well.

The pair combined for 26 goals and 20 assists across two seasons together at Stoke, and the Austrian has gotten even better since joining the Hammers, so could he help Shaqiri do the same?

Shaqiri also likes to isolate players one-on-one and use his pace to get in behind defences, which would be a lot easier on the massive London Stadium pitch than at Goodison, especially given the style Pellegrini plans to instil next season.

West Ham fans on Twitter loved the idea of a bargain deal for Shaqiri, but should the Hammers take the plunge? Let us know by voting in the poll below…