Liverpool are likely to look a number of options to strengthen their midfield this summer. The likes of Gerrard, Mascherano and Alonso have never been replaced and Liverpool certainly miss a deep lying defensive midfielder. Therefore many people started to link Granit Xhaka, who delivered fine displays in the Bundesliga and Champions League. The 23-year-old can play either as a box-to-box defensive midfield player, or as a deep-lying playmaker. Especially the second type of player would help Liverpool moment because they miss someone like Toni Kroos or the Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso. The former Basel academy product has all the tools to prove a very useful signing for the Merseyside club.
The Switzerland international has been in impressive form for Borussia Monchengladbach in the last two season. He cemented his place in the Mönchengladbach line-up and attracts the interest from Europe’s top clubs. A few weeks ago Xhaka’s agent reportedly met Jürgen Klopp to discuss a move. Some reports even claim that he signed a pre-contract with Liverpool or is likely to move to Manchester City for €50m. All of these reports are unconfirmed and probably made-up and false. However the Swiss playmakers appears on the radar of many English top clubs like Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool. The fee would be is expect to be around £35 million. Gladbach is keen to sell him because he has a buy-out clause in 2017 for around £22m and Gladbach would miss out on a lot of money.
But one thing is certain Xhaka is a highly-rated Bundesliga player who would like to move to the Premier League. He confirmed to the press: “I think everybody has a dream. Everybody has a childhood dream and that (playing in the Premier League) is my childhood dream.” Surely Xhaka has the quality to play in the English league. His former coach Thorsten Fink once said that “Granit Xhaka is the finest talent in Switzerland” and Ottmar Hitzfeld calls him “the young Schweinsteiger”. That’s why you should keep an eye on him, but who is Granit Xhaka?
Xhaka has certainly one of best left foots in the modern game, which allows him to play excellent cross-field passes to the wings. The Swiss playmaker has completed 85 per cent of his attempted passes in the Bundesliga this season. Xhaka also has European experience after playing in Champions League and Europa League for Gladbach and Basel. He has shown great leadership skills despite his young age and already took over Borussia’s armband. The midfielder is very intelligence on the field as well. This allows the technically gifted midfielder to win the ball back easily with superb tackles. Xhaka can score great free-kicks as well like his superb goal against Villarreal in the Champions League. One of the reasons for Borussia Mönchengladbach’s recent success was Xhaka’s dominating performances in the centre of midfield alongside Mahmoud Dahoud. Xhaka has the ability to form a big part of that new-look midfield. He is similar in style to Alonso and could form an exciting, long-term partnership with Can. The German could play higher up the pitch, which would allow Xhaka to layoff and open up the play. He is robust enough to operate as an effective ball-winner and can play in the attacking build-up with outstanding technical skill. This partnership could dominate most teams around the world and is great to think of.
On the other site Xhaka can be difficult to handle. When he was unhappy with his form and his lack of he commented badly on his current club in an interview. On the field Xhaka’s great vision turn negative when he tries too difficult passes. However decision-making is mostly a downside of a younger player and be adjust. Statistically Xhaka’s record doesn’t appear to be go at all. However he is often plays in the holding part and isn’t expected to contribute goals and assists.
Xhaka is undoubtedly a future world-class player and plays in one of Liverpool’s weakest positions. Still just 23, Xhaka has his best years ahead of him. Liverpool would do well to bring him to England.
A report by our German correspondent Sefendo