Liverpool have held talks with representatives of Stoke City winger Xherdan Shaqiri, according to reliable Bleacher Report journalist Dean Jones.
The news comes 24 hours after Liverpool’s negotiations with Lyon over the transfer of playmaker Nabil Fekir were reported to have fallen through.
Lyon shocked fans in Merseyside and beyond by announcing Fekir, who had been widely expected to move to Liverpool, would instead be staying at the French club this summer over the weekend.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was thought to be looking to sign a “multi-functional forward” in addition to Fekir, who was expected to be the heir to Phillippe Coutinho who departed for Barcelona in January, having recently been linked with Bordeaux forward Malcom among other targets.
Shaqiri, who played for Inter Milan and Bayern Munich before his 2015 move to Stoke, seems to fit that bill, so while the timing is coincidental and concerning to some, he’s more likely to be a potential alternative to Malcom or Christian Pulisic than Fekir.
And his reported £12m release clause triggered by Stoke’s relegation presents a value for money that will be attractive to the Merseyside giants as they look to add depth to their squad.
Shaqiri, who is currently preparing for World Cup duty with Switzerland, featured heavily for a Stoke City side that was ultimately relegated from the Premier League last term, scoring eight goals and contributing seven assists in 36 Premier League appearances.
It’s thought that he would offer cover for Liverpool’s highly rated front three of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane should he make the switch to Anfield, while the relatively low fee would free up funds to strengthen the squad elsewhere.