United & Liverpool winger target 'like Messi'

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Xherdan Shaqiri - a reported target for both Manchester United and Liverpool - has been compared to Lionel Messi by FC Basel teammate Scott Chipperfield.

The Swiss winger is regarded as one of the finest young talents currently operating in European football and, thus, has been linked with a number of the continent's top clubs.

Two of these interested parties are reported to be Manchester United and Liverpool, with both Sir Alex Ferguson and Kenny Dalglish said to be admirers of the 20-year-old.

Ferguson we get the opportunity to experience the talents of Shaqiri at close quarters on Wednesday as United travel to Switzerland for their Champions League crunch clash with Basel.

And, ahead of the encounter, Chipperfield has hailed the talents of his young teammate.

"He’s only small, but that can be deceiving – he’s solid and strong," Chipperfield told the official Manchester United website. "He’s only young but he has very quick feet.

"Sometimes he reminds me a little of Messi, the way he dribbles. He’s naturally left-footed, but he also likes playing on the right where he can cut inside and shoot."

He added: "He’s a very good player and I think he’ll go on to play for a much bigger club in future. He’s a big player for us, but I don’t know how long Basel will be able to hand onto him for."

Liverpool, meanwhile, are alleged to have had scouts tracking Shaqiri for the best part of a year, with the initial interest starting during the tenure of Roy Hodgson.

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