Premier League giants Liverpool have opened talks with Stoke City over the transfer of winger Xherdan Shaqiri, according to Telegraph journalist John Percy.

Liverpool have been long-term admirers of Shaqiri and their interest has been public knowledge for some time know, but the club have finally officially opened talks with the Potters over a potential £13 million transfer.

The Swiss winger once again impressed for Switzerland at this summer’s World Cup, but could ultimately do little to stop his country sliding out of the tournament at the hands of a plucky Sweden side in the round of 16.

Despite some impressive displays for the Potters last season, Shaqiri was unable to help the club avoid the drop as Stoke slipped back down to the second tier of English football after a prolonged stay in the Premier League.

The relegation ensured that a new release clause was triggered in Shaqiri’s contract, with the 26-year-old now allowed to depart the club for a modest fee of £13 million – a true bargain in today’s market.

Shaqiri’s career makes for impressive reading despite the recent relegation with Stoke, with stints at Bayern Munich and Inter Milan displaying the huge potential the 5’7 winger possessed earlier in his playing days.

However, despite his career falling off track somewhat at Stoke, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp clearly believes the 74-time Swiss international can perform at the highest level and aims to bring him to Anfield this summer.

Shaqiri would link up with lethal attacking trio Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah as well as new signings Fabinho and Naby Keita at Liverpool.

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Sports journalist and editor. Southend-based Reading FC fan. Can sometimes catch me editing for In Bed With Maradona. Find me on Twitter @HarrySmithRFC

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