Liverpool line up shock swoop for Shaqiri and are ready to pay release clause

Liverpool have expressed a firm interest in Swiss international Xherdan Shaqiri.

The winger has a break clause in his contract after Stoke’s relegation from the Premier League, which allows him to leave for the £12m fee his Potteries club paid Inter Milan two years ago.

And that has seen the Reds make an enquiry about his situation, as Jurgen Klopp looks for experienced back up to his much-vaunted front three.

Shaqiri ticks a lot of boxes for the Anfield club. He has pace to burn, can score goals and can also play all across the front line…which would provide invaluable cover for his three amigos, Salah, Firmino and Mane.

The Reds struggled towards the back end of last season as an unfortunate injury list gave the manager a headache as he looked to shuffle his pack and juggle the joint demands of the Premier League and Europe.

Klopp himself admitted he needed more cover in the final weeks, and a cut price Shaqiri would provide just that, with the winger allowed to leave for a reasonable fee after Stoke crashed out of the Premier League.

Liverpool are monitoring the situation as the forward builds up for the World Cup with Switzerland, who are in the same group as Russia.

The club has been looking at options as cover for the front line, with Sporting Director Michael Edwards also running the rule over Nigeria international Moses Simon, who currently plays for Gent.

Liverpool could face competition for Shaqiri though, with Merseyside neighbours Everton also monitoring the situation, and Roma still interested, after making a bid for the winger back in January.

And Shaqiri may consider a guarantee of first team football ahead of Liverpool’s offer, after his experience at Inter, where he played just 15 games after signing from Bayern Munich for around £13m.

The 26-year-old eventually moved to Stoke in search of games after a frustrating season in Italy, and he will look at the opportunities on offer before making any decision over his future.

Ironically, Inter beat Liverpool to his signature back in 2015, when the then Reds boss Brendan Rodgers had attempted to sign him.