Switzerland head coach Vladimir Petkovic has rejected Jurgen Klopp’s claim in November that Xherdan Shaqiri suffered injury while on international duty.
Creative attacker Shaqiri only returned to the Liverpool fold on Sunday after a hamstring problem. Indeed, he had missed his club’s previous 10 games in all competitions.
Klopp revealed in November that the 29-year-old had encountered a “little muscle injury” while away with his country.
What’s more, Liverpool did not discover the injury until he trained with his club. After feeling a problem, Klopp said that a subsequent scan showed up an issue from “five or six days ago”.
Speaking to Blick, however, Petkovic has rebuffed that claim, offering his own perspective on Shaqiri’s situation.
“He didn’t injure himself with us, he trained normally with us when the Ukraine game was cancelled,” he said.
“He hadn’t felt anything with us, but only during training at Liverpool. If you’ve had a lot of injuries, you also have a lot of scars, and the muscle is no longer as elastic as it used to be.
“He works extremely hard on it. I firmly believe that he can bring a lot to Liverpool.
“I would have found it more suitable if the club had reported to the Nati doctor. Instead of expressing yourself publicly.”
Shaqiri has endured a mixed run of form since his move to Anfield in the summer of 2018. In his debut season, the Swiss contributed to 24 Premier League games with six goals and three assists.
Last season, meanwhile, he only just earned a top-flight winners’ medal by making seven appearances. Indeed, he again battled injury but failed to make a strong impact.
However, he had been in fantastic form before his most recent injury, adding another dimension to Klopp‘s attack.
Haaland names Van Dijk among elite
Meanwhile, Erling Haaland has said that Virgil van Dijk is one of the three best defenders in the world.
The Dutch centre-back has not played since mid-October after suffering a serious knee injury. Indeed, it remains unclear how long he will remain on the sidelines.
Nevertheless, Borussia Dortmund striker Haaland holds the 29-year-old in great esteem for his impact on Klopp’s team.