Sunday, September 20, 2020

Liverpool can still get even better after enjoying ´unbelievable year´, says Shaqiri

SoccerNews in La Liga 11 Apr 2020

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Xherdan Shaqiri believes Liverpool have the potential to get even better after enjoying an “unbelievable year” in 2019 that included Champions League glory in Madrid.

The Reds were crowned kings of Europe for a sixth time thanks to a 2-0 victory over domestic rivals Tottenham, their success in the Spanish capital helping ease the pain of narrowly missing out on the Premier League title to Manchester City.

It was a second Champions League success for Shaqiri, who had previously lifted the trophy during his time with Bayern Munich, helping make amends following Liverpool’s defeat to Real Madrid in the 2018 showpiece.

In an interview with the club’s official website, the Switzerland international reflected on the achievements of Jurgen Klopp’s squad in the previous season. 

“It was an unbelievable year for us. It was a shame we didn’t win the league but it was amazing to get the Champions League title again for Liverpool,” Shaqiri said. 

“For me, the second time. You never forget these kinds of feelings, these kinds of trophies you win with the team. And to celebrate with the fans, after a long time they could celebrate something big in the city, was just amazing.

“The potential for this team is very high, I think we can go as high as possible. But we need to stay on our toes and to be on our highest level to be really very, very successful.”

Liverpool reached the final thanks to a stunning comeback against Barcelona in the last four, overturning a 3-0 deficit from the first leg as they won 4-0 on Merseyside.

Shaqiri revealed how the timing of the second goal at Anfield – scored by Georginio Wijnaldum in the 54th minute – raised the belief they could complete a famous turnaround. The same player scored again shortly after to draw the hosts level on aggregate, with Divock Origi adding a fourth.

“It was an unbelievable comeback. Nobody thought we were going to come back,” Shaqiri explained.

“To be honest, we always believe. The situation when we came into the dressing room at half-time you thought, ‘okay, let’s finish well’ because it was just 1-0.

“To be honest, I never thought we were going to win the game 4-0 in the end, but if you score the second one you start believing.

“It was momentum; I think if we played 20 minutes more we were going to score two more goals. It was just amazing. The fans behind us helped us a lot. It was an unbelievable comeback that we’ll never forget.”

After narrowly missing out to City last time, Liverpool were on the brink of being crowned champions for the first time in the Premier League era before the coronavirus crisis forced the season to be suspended.

Shaqiri has made just six league appearances in an injury-troubled campaign, the last of which was off the bench during a 1-0 away win over Spurs on January 11.

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