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    Sunday, 1 November 2020

    Xherdan Shaqiri explains 'perfect' change and makes Liverpool admission

    Xherdan Shaqiri has addressed his Liverpool comeback after helping Diogo Jota to Premier League winner against West Ham United

    Xherdan Shaqiri star against West Ham United.

    Xherdan Shaqiri has vowed to maintain his Liverpool revival after admitting he has had to do things "the hard way" at Anfield.

    Shaqiri stepped off the bench to set up the winner for fellow substitute Diogo Jota as the Reds came from behind to beat West Ham United 2-1 at home on Saturday evening.

    The 29-year-old was making only his third Premier League appearance of the calendar year after injuries had restricted him to just eight minutes over two previous substitute outings.

    Shaqiri had been expected to leave ahead of last month's transfer window before opting to resist offers elsewhere and fight for his place at Anfield.

    And having played a part in Jota's opener in the Champions League win over FC Midtjylland last Tuesday, the Switzerland international - who has now appeared in three of Liverpool's last four games - feels he is beginning to contribute once more.

    “It’s always nice to be involved," said Shaqiri.

    “Obviously I was injured a few times and it was always the hard way for me until now.

    "I’m very happy that I’ve got my minutes back, I’ve tried to stay fit and I hope it stays like this."

    Shaqiri's pass to Jota was his first direct assist for Liverpool since crossing for Divock Origi's winner in the 3-2 Premier League triumph at Newcastle United in May 2019.

    And he said: “It was unbelievable. Of course, the subs always try to change the game and try to decide the games.

    "And, of course, I’m a player and Diogo is also a player who can decide games and we needed that, so it was perfect.

    “We both (played a part) in the second goal. It was a nice one and an important one, so we are very happy the three points stay here at Anfield."

    Liverpool had only minutes earlier had a Jota goal chalked off after Sadio Mane was adjudged to have fouled West Ham goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianksi in the build-up.

    "It's always not nice when VAR comes," said Shaqiri,
    speaking to liverpoolfc.com.

    "With the emotions, you score a goal and you are happy. but we kept going even when the goal was disallowed.

    “You have to believe until the end and in the end we scored a nice goal and the second one was in the football rules, so we are very happy."

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