Liverpool’s transfer recovery mission falls at first hurdle

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The chance for Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool to redeem themselves in the transfer market has arrived, but it seems their efforts to restore the fans’ faith in their buying ability has suffered an early blow.

Bayern Munich winger Xherdan Shaqiri was the man the 7/1 top-four hopefuls wanted to kick their winter spree off with, but seem to have missed out on the Swiss international in the face of some competition from Inter Milan.

The Serie A club, fresh from adding Lukas Podolski to their squad in the opening stages of the January window, are thought to be Shaqiri’s preferred destination, having failed to secure a place ahead of Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben in Pep Guardiola’s side.

According to Talksport, Inter will bring the 23-year-old to the San Siro on loan for the remainder of the campaign, with the obligatory chance to purchase the former Basel flyer outright for around £12m woven into the small print.

Shaqiri’s decision to plump for the Nerazzurri is a blow to the Reds’ attempts to regain some momentum this season, although they don’t strictly need another forward with Lazar Markovic, Adam Lallana, Raheem Sterling, Fabio Borini and Philippe Coutinho all in a similar mould.

Clearly Borini is a prime suspect to leave the club this January, but Rodgers would need to trim more than just the Italian from his squad in order to fit Shaqiri into a manageable playing roster.

Markovic has been a blind-alley-seeking disappointment with the ball at his feet in his displays since arriving from Benfica and Lallana has been ruled out for at least a month with a thigh injury.

A move for the Bayern man therefore makes some sense, but is perhaps a blessing in disguise in its failure with other areas (like between the sticks) far more important to replenish.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.