Xherdan Shaqiri says he's 'ready for new challenge' amid Lazio links

Jamie Spencer
Shaqiri is set to leave Liverpool this summer
Shaqiri is set to leave Liverpool this summer / Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Liverpool winger Xherdan Shaqiri has revealed he is set to leave Anfield this summer, while also flirting with a move to Serie A's Lazio.

Shaqiri, who joined the Reds from Stoke in 2018, also admitted that he has already spoken to Liverpool about his future and the club won’t stand in his way once a suitable offer arrives.

The Switzerland international was waiting until after Euro 2020 to properly start considering his future and is now awaiting news from his representatives of interest and offers.

“The important thing at this moment in my career is to be able to play regularly, but that hasn’t always been the case in the last three seasons,” Shaqiri is quoted as saying by Football Italia.

Xherdan Shaqiri
Shaqiri is hoping for more playing time than he has had at Liverpool / Michael Regan/Getty Images

“This is why I told Liverpool that I feel ready for a new challenge. They accepted my wish and will seriously consider the offers that will come. They will not stop me.”

Shaqiri explained that he is particularly impressed by the work being done by Lazio sporting director Igli Tare, who shares Shaqiri’s Albanian roots.

“Igli Tare has been doing an excellent job at Lazio for years. If it’s true that he has great respect for me, then I’m honoured,” the player said.

“I have been following Lazio for a long time, they are a top team. In general, due to my characteristics, I like to play more attacking football and [Maurizio] Sarri practices it. It would be intriguing.”

Shaqiri likes the football Lazio play under Maurizio Sarri
Shaqiri likes the football Lazio play under Maurizio Sarri / Marco Rosi - SS Lazio/Getty Images

Shaqiri briefly played in Italy in the past during a short-lived spell at Inter in 2015. It didn’t work out as hoped, making only 15 appearances before moving on to Stoke, but he doesn’t regret it and has spoken positively about the quality of Serie A.

“I think it’s not just my opinion that football in Italy has developed substantially in recent years. The win at the European Championship is there to prove it, a well-deserved result. Just take a look at how many Premier League players have moved to Serie A,” he said.

Goal journalist Neil Jones has reported that, in addition to Lazio, there is also interest in Shaqiri from Napoli, Sevilla and Villarreal.

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