Powercube, we’ll never forget you.
While an official announcement from the club is yet to be released, reputable sources like Paul Joyce at The Times let the news out on Sunday that Xherdan Shaqiri is off to Lyon after the clubs agreed upon a £9.5 million transfer fee, up from their original bid of £4 million.
The Guardian reports that Shaqiri requested the move following this year’s Euro tournament after a fine showing for Switzerland, but it’s been assumed that the club would let him go at the end of his contract due to injuries keeping him from a good run of games and inability to fit into the squad.
That inability certainly doesn’t mean he hasn’t contributed. While he has only made 63 appearances in total for the Reds, Shaqiri scored 8 goals, including against Manchester United in December 2018. He contributed nine assists, especially to Georginio Wijnaldum’s against Barcelona (that doesn’t really need a date on it, honestly).
It is probably unlikely that the club will find an outright replacement for Shaqiri this late in the game. With the transfer window closing this week, a deal probably won’t materialize unless it’s being worked on as we speak. Harvey Elliott is being trained to take over in Shaqiri’s attacking position, and after his impressive showing on Saturday against Burnley, he would make a fine player to put into that squad role.
All in all, a tidy bit of business for Michael Edwards and the club, who spent £13 million on him in the summer of 2018 after Stoke City was relegated. Sure, a loss, but the memories are forever.