On the very last Premier League matchday, Liverpool coach Jürgen Klopp gives some players who have not been used often this season the opportunity to show themselves. Xherdan Shaqiri is not one of them.
Xherdan Shaqiri has played 263 minutes – not even three full games – since his last Nati appearance on June 9, 2019 in competitive matches. Various muscle injuries would have prevented more deployments, one can read again and again. A few weeks ago, “The Athletic” reported that there is a lot to be said for the Swiss staying in Liverpool. Because, firstly, it is hard to find a club that wants to pay the required 30 million euros transfer fee. Secondly, the “Reds” don’t want to spend a lot of money on new signings in the summer and therefore need players for the second guard.
Only Shaqiri is not even one for the second guard anymore. This was shown once again on Sunday. Coach Klopp changed his entire attack line for the last game of the season (3-1 win at Newcastle), left star strikers Salah, Firmino and Mané on the bench and instead put their trust in Minamino, Origi and Oxlade-Chamberlain. In attacking midfield, Keita and Milner were two other players who are not necessarily part of the regular staff.
And Shaqiri? As in the previous week, he was 5: 3 against Chelsea on the bench. For 90 minutes. Klopp would rather give the 19-year-old talent Curtis Jones a few more minutes. Although Liverpool has long been a champion and there is no other player in the “Reds” who would do as good a game as Shaqiri. After recovering from his calf injury, the 28-year-old has made it into the squad five times in the last six games of the season, but is only used once – for seven minutes in the 1-2 against Arsenal.
It’s time to start playing again
Shaqiri has been under contract with Liverpool for two years, winning the Champions League with Klopp and Co. and now the Premier League. The 82-times Nati player did not play a major role. Overall, the “Reds” played 110 games in these two seasons, Shaqiri only started 18 times – 15 of them in the first year.
His time on Anfield Road is always successful. But now it’s time to play regularly again. Also with regard to the postponed European Championship. If Shaqiri wants to be an option for Nati coach Vladimir Petkovic in a year, he can’t afford another season like the one that just ended.
Liverpool will not get 30 million for the Rubik’s Cube – not anyway in times of Corona. But two years ago the English master paid just under 15 million for Shaqiri. The “Reds” will hardly put any obstacles in the way of a player who obviously no longer plays any role in Klopp’s plans. Shaqiri’s time in Liverpool has expired until 2023 despite the contract.