Monday, December 5, 2022

Newcastle United Identify Liverpool Ace As Potential Target: Good Business For The Magpies?

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Nikhil Vinodh
Nikhil has been an avid Chelsea fan for as long as the concept of time has existed and rumours say that he even bleeds blue. Having lived in the UK for 3 years, Nikhil is said to have an excellent understanding of the atmosphere surrounding the English game. His role model is the greatest manager of all time - Jose Mourinho.

According to a recent report by the Daily Mail, Premier League outfit Newcastle United have earmarked Liverpool ace Xherdan Shaqiri as a major transfer target for the summer. The report suggests that the Magpies are interested in acquiring the Swiss winger from Anfield, as the impending £300m takeover by the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund still hangs in the balance. This financial takeover could be the catalyst that Newcastle need to make significant moves during the summer transfer window.

It has been suggested that Newcastle United are looking to capitalise on the Swiss winger’s alarming lack of playing time under Jurgen Klopp this season. It has also been claimed that the Merseyside club will not stand in the way of the winger departing if the right offer does come in during the summer. It’s further reported that AS Roma and Sevilla both made advances for Shaqiri in January, but that Liverpool were reluctant to let him go on loan, owing to their participation in three separate competitions at that point.

How Has Shaqiri Performed At Liverpool Over The Last Two Years?

The Swiss midfielder was acquired by the Reds back in the summer of 2018 when Jurgen Klopp was still desperately trying to catch up with the pace being set by Guardiola’s Manchester City. Although the mood around the Premier League is quite different now, it must be conceded that Shaqiri’s influence within the team has been minimal.

While he did play an important part in the Reds’ Champions League win last season, the winger’s playing time this season has been restricted to just ten fixtures across all competitions, compared to the 24 that he made last time out.

Newcastle United Have Earmarked Liverpool Ace Xherdan Shaqiri - Shaqiri celebrates a goal
BURNLEY, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 05: Xherdan Shaqiri of Liverpool celebrates after scoring his team’s third goal during the Premier League match between Burnley FC and Liverpool FC at Turf Moor on December 5, 2018 in Burnley, United Kingdom. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

What Would Shaqiri Add To This Newcastle United Attack?

The Magpies have made a couple of decent attacking signings over the last couple of seasons, but it’s still far from what’s required if they hope to challenge for a European spot next season. The additions of Allan Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almiron have greatly helped their cause, with the wide duo having already displayed what they’re capable of throughout the season. Shaqiri would fit in well with a similar kind of trend at Tyneside.

Despite being rather diminutive in stature, the energetic Swiss international has the quality required to excel in the Premier League. Having spent time with Stoke City and now Liverpool, Shaqiri has both the finesse and experience to take this Magpies’ front-line to the next level. An able dribbler of the ball, the Liverpool man has an incredible shot under his belt, while his unselfish nature could help the manager bring the best out of Brazilian flop Joelinton as well. The winger is also a good crosser of the ball, and given the number of headed goals that Magpies’ defensive players have scored this season, Shaqiri’s addition could prove to be an inspired move.

Newcastle United Have Earmarked Liverpool Ace Xherdan Shaqiri: Good Move For The Magpies?

The Toon Army has been witness to a plethora of toothless attacking performances this season, and the acquisition of a player of Shaqiri’s reputation could come as a statement of intent from Newcastle United’s board. While the impending takeover could elevate the Magpies into the highest level of the European game, it must be conceded that such a surge is a gradual process that would require patience and careful investment.

Shaqiri has proven his quality by playing for a club as big as Liverpool, and signing him up this summer will be an excellent coup for the St. James’ Park club.

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