It may not be a signing to match the excitement of Fabinho or Naby Keïta—or the failed signing of Nabil Fekir—but Liverpool now look set to add an important attacking depth option to the squad in the coming days with Stoke City’s Xherdan Shqiri expected to arrive.
The 26-year-old Kosovoan-born Swiss international and fan of Albanian eagles is, according to a lengthy list of club-briefed journalists, expected to become Liverpool’s next signing, with his acquisition made easier by the existence of a £13.5M relegation release clause.
Liverpool, though, are expected to negotiate the transfer rather than simply triggering Shaqiri’s release, as Stoke want to take a player on loan from Liverpool for the upcoming season—with The Liverpool Echo’s James Pearce believing Sheyi Ojo is their first choice.
Shaqiri had some thicc performances at the World Cup this summer and scored eight goals and seven assists for Stoke last year fora rate of a goal involvement every 203 minutes. The most exciting part of his game may be his iliac furrow, which he would like to show to you.
For a player of his age and with the promise he first took from Basel in the Swiss league to Bayern Munich when he was younger—promise he never truly delivered on at Bayern or for Stoke, where his play at times looked downright indifferent—it’s not the greatest resume.
He won’t, however, be arriving at Liverpool as a starter. He’ll be arriving as second-choice on either wing behind Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané. And he’ll be arriving knowing that this is his last chance to make it at a big club. Plus, at £13.5M, he doesn’t cost very much.
Add it all together and it’s a move that seems worthwhile, especially if it allows the club to retain funds to strengthen other positions. If it’s the final incoming transfer move of the summer for Liverpool, though, it will likely leave many feeling a little disappointed.