Xherdan Shaqiri: From Liverpool’s bargain summer signing to bit part player

Xherdan Shaqiri was hailed as the transfer signing of the year at the end of 2018. Now, three months on, the Switzerland international cannot get on the pitch.

The attacking midfielder has scored six goals and tallied two assists in 21 league games. His most impressive outing as a Red came against Manchester United at Anfield. Shaqiri came off the bench to score twice and power Liverpool to victory.

Since his two-goal performance, Shaqiri has been rarely seen. He has not appeared for Liverpool in the Premier League since coming off the bench against Manchester United at Old Trafford. That appearance came on February 24th.

So, why is Xherdan Shaqiri now a bit-part player?

What has happened to Xherdan Shaqiri?

Shaqiri hasn’t played a full 90 minutes since playing against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the FA Cup. That fixture was played at Molineaux on January 7th.

The Swiss international looked incredibly dissatisfied playing in the team that night. Manager Jurgen Klopp had to mix and match his players for the fixture with Shaqiri being one of the senior members picked.

Liverpool lost 2-1 to Wolves in a game they didn’t look up for. To blame Shaqiri for the performance alone would be foolish, but he played poorly and didn’t seem to want to be on the pitch.

Shaqiri is a defensive liability. With the Reds already having Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, and Roberto Firmino committed to the act, adding Shaqiri to the midfield three would add an ineffective defender. Liverpool’s defence has been at its best in years and Klopp’s preferred midfield players have done their part in breaking up play and starting attacks.

Xherdan Shaqiri Super Sub

The attacking midfielder has proven he can give Liverpool an injection of life off the bench. He did it against Manchester United at Anfield with two goals.

Klopp attempted to use the Shaqiri magic at Old Trafford, but the midfielder wasn’t able to repeat his previous performance.

Liverpool have an extremely difficult run coming up in which they must truly win all seven matches to have a chance at lifting the Premier League trophy.

It is likely Shaqiri will find himself on the bench from the start in each of Liverpool’s upcoming league matches.

He could still play a major part in Liverpool’s season climax. But it seems the shortcomings that saw him leave Bayern Munich and Inter Milan are once again popping up.