The minutes afforded to Xherdan Shaqiri could make signing players a little more difficult this summer.

It’s clear to see that Liverpool are happy with their first-team. Why wouldn’t they be? The starting XI feels nigh-on flawless, capable of beating anyone.

Tough, disciplined defence trying to keep the score down? Liverpool can break through. Pressure’s on, goals are needed? Liverpool find a way. Need a 4-0 win against the Spanish champions? Consider it done.

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The first-team is not in need of replacements this summer.

What Liverpool do lack, though, is a bench to rival Manchester City. City, for instance, have the four most expensive wingers in Premier League history to choose from. In comparison, Liverpool signed Xherdan Shaqiri for £13m to offer depth.

 

That’s not to say he hasn’t done that. His goals, particularly around Christmas, were vital. Since then, though, Shaqiri hasn’t played too much.

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The Swiss started Liverpool’s last two games of 2018 against Newcastle United and Arsenal. In 2019, he’s begun just four – two in the Premier League – featuring in just 11 games.

Of his seven substitute appearances, Shaqiri played over 20 minutes just twice. Considering Liverpool are looking for squad options this summer, that may be worrying.

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Will players want to arrive knowing that Klopp prefers to stick to his tried-and-trusted XI? He’s not a coach that likes a lot of rotation and you’d have to rival Shaqiri, too.

Then there’s the returning Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to contend with and possibly Rhian Brewster, too.

Whether you consider Shaqiri a successful signing or not, his game time this season may cause players to think twice this summer.