Football

Liverpool set to launch January offer for Xherdan Shaqiri

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Liverpool already appear to be making plans for the January transfer window, with reports suggesting that the club will make a new offer to sign Xherdan Shaqiri when the market re-opens for business.

The Bayern Munich playmaker was linked heavily with a potential switch to Anfield this summer but ultimately remained at the Allianz Arena to compete for a starting berth under Pep Guardiola in the Bundesliga.

However, that seems to have changed now, with the latest speculation from the Daily Express - which carries quotes from Shaqiri's agent who claims that a winter transfer is a strong possibility - claiming that Brendan Rodgers retains an interest in the 22-year-old and will make an offer in the new year.

Shaqiri reputation

Having previously enjoyed a reputation as one of European football's most exciting young talents following his move to Bayern Munich from reigning Swiss champions FC Basel back in 2012, Shaqiri's promising career has stalled somewhat in recent times.

Although Guardiola would appear to still value his services, the Swiss international - who was largely anonymous for his country on Monday evening as Vladimir Petkovic's men crashed to a disappointing 2-0 defeat to England in their opening Euro 2016 qualifier at St. Jakob-Park - has found regular starts somewhat difficult to come by due to the sheer quality of competition for places in Bayern's star-studded squad.

Shaqiri has featured in both of Bayern's 2014/15 domestic fixtures to date, however, although he was only called upon as a 62nd-minute substitute in the recent 2-1 win over Wolfsburg. 

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Liverpool interest

Liverpool - who were forced to come to terms with the departure of arguably the Premier League's best player this summer when controversial Uruguayan Luis Suarez completed his high-profile switch to Barcelona - are obviously long-term admirers of Shaqiri and it is not too difficult to imagine him fitting in with Rodgers' established style of play.

Quite how much the club are prepared to bid for his services is unclear, although it seems likely that a club of Bayern's stature would be unwilling to part with a player of Shaqiri's age and quality without receiving significant financial compensation in return.

Spending power

Liverpool demonstrated their full spending power during the recent window, of course, with Suarez's eventual departure offset by the arrivals of attacking quartet Mario Balotelli, Lazar Markovic, Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert.

Belgian youngster Divock Origi was also signed, although he will not arrive on Merseyside from Lille on a permanent basis until next year.

Having seen their chances of capturing a first top-flight title in 24 years cruelly scuppered by a chronic lack of defensive solidity in May, the Reds also moved to strengthen their backline with young Spanish full-backs Alberto Moreno and Javi Manquillo joining the Rodgers revolution along with Dejan Lovren and defensive midfielder Emre Can.

Liverpool face Aston Villa in the Premier League on Saturday, but will be without key striker Daniel Sturridge after it was revealed that the thigh injury he suffered on international duty will keep him sidelined for around three weeks.

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Topics:
Bundesliga
Football
Liverpool
Premier League
Bayern Munich

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