Xherdan Shaqiri latest: Switzerland playmaker impresses in defeat as Liverpool continue to chase
Bayern Munich man, 22, most potent threat as Swiss run Argentina close
Wednesday 02 July 2014
Watching Premier League managers would have enjoyed what they saw from Switzerland playmaker Xherdan Shaqiri.
The 22-year-old was the most potent attacking threat the Swiss possessed against Argentina and had Ottmar Hitzfeld sent out a slightly more attacking team against a defensively vulnerable Argentina, he might have been the star man.
Standing just 5ft 6in, the Yugoslavian-born playmaker is a threat with both feet and possesses a low centre of gravity that allows him to slink around defenders.
Lionel Messi is the world's best with the ball at his feet, attacking defenders, but Shaqiri is not far behind. His nickname of the 'Alpine Messi' is a fair one - the Switzerland No 23 is able to beat his man going left and right, and also has electric pace to go past his marker.
Against Argentina he was the player who created attacks almost single-handedly as Hitzfeld decided to send his Swiss team out to contain a superior Argentina team.
It was Shaqiri's pass that sent Josip Drmic free in the first half, but the Bayer Leverkusen striker couldn't finish.
With Luis Suarez looking increasingly like he will not be at Liverpool next season, Brendan Rodgers could see Shaqiri as an ideal replacement.
Alexis Sanchez remains his top target, but the Bayern Munich midfielder is also on his transfer list.
Shaqiri's goal record is perhaps not as good as it could be - though he does mainly operate on the wing - but Shaqiri could be available for less money than Sanchez.
Under Pep Guardiola Shaqiri last season, Shaqiri barely got a look in for the German champions. He started just 14 games, completing 90 minutes in only four of those, making a further 13 appearances from the bench.
Despite his limited playing time, Shaqiri scored seven goals and added four assists.
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