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Enough – Liverpool parting ways with their £80k-a-week outcast would be a win-win for all

Xherdan Shaqiri (Getty Images)
Xherdan Shaqiri celebrates after scoring (Getty Images)

Why Liverpool must offload Xherdan Shaqiri this summer

According to journalist Nicolo Schira (h/t Daily Express), Liverpool winger Xherdan Shaqiri has been targeted by Lazio.

The Serie A side have identified the 28-year-old Shaqiri as the ideal candidate to lead their attack following David Silva’s decision snub. The Manchester City legend was Lazio’s primary target this summer, however, he opted for a switch to Real Sociedad, leaving Lazio to look for new options.

Xherdan Shaqiri has fallen down the pecking order at Liverpool.
Xherdan Shaqiri has fallen down the pecking order at Liverpool. (Getty Images)

Shaqiri, meanwhile, has fallen down the pecking order at Liverpool despite arriving at Anfield just two years back. The £80k-a-week Swiss star barely featured in Liverpool’s title-winning campaign last season, managing a mere seven league appearances. To add to Shaqiri’s miseries, he has also been troubled by various injuries that limited his appearances last season.

However, there is no questioning his talent, with the winger having racked up six goals and three assists from 24 league games in his maiden season for the Reds.

Shaqiri surplus to requirements at Liverpool

Meanwhile, the report claims that a fresh start at Lazio could appeal to Shaqiri, who has until now spent the majority of his time at Anfield on the sidelines. Manager Jurgen Klopp continues to prefer Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane to lead Liverpool’s attack from the flanks and it is not a big surprise considering their impressive form.

Liverpool forward Sadio Mane has been in brilliant form this season.
Liverpool forward Sadio Mane has been in brilliant form this season. (Getty Images)

Both the players scored a combined 37 league goals for them last season, thus establishing themselves as the side’s first-choice wingers. Meanwhile, the arrival of Japanese winger Takumi Minamino from RB Salzburg in January put Shaqiri’s starting role under even more jeopardy.

Despite being the latest addition, the 25-year-old Minamino has already made 10 league appearances, overtaking Shaqiri in the pecking order at Anfield.

Now with young wingers Harry Wilson and Sheyi Ojo back in the side following their respective loan spells last season, it seems first-team opportunities will be very rare for Shaqiri.

Takumi Minamino joined Liverpool from RB Salzburg as a winter arrival earlier this year.
Takumi Minamino joined Liverpool from RB Salzburg as a winter arrival earlier this year. (Getty Images)

That said, Shaqiri currently looks like an unwanted man and surplus to the club’s requirements. Hence, it would be wise to offload him rather than keep him in the side unnecessarily. The Reds could rather sell him and use that money to strengthen areas that need real improvement.

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Verdict

Liverpool at the moment have as many as six wingers in their side including Shaqiri. With the side already having enough depth in that role, letting him go would not have a severe impact on their displays next season. Moreover, Lazio’s interest in Shaqiri could offer him more game time unlike in Liverpool. Thus, by all means, it is a win-win situation for both parties.

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