Shaqiri left out of Liverpool squad due to political reasonsLast updated on Nov 05, 2018, 07:06 pm
The Champions League week is here, and several exciting matches are lined up as teams like Barcelona, Inter Milan, Liverpool will be in action.
But, amid this excitement, it has been revealed that Xherdan Shaqiri will be left out of the team for Liverpool's trip to Red Star Belgrade for political reasons.
This has been decided and confirmed by Jurgen Klopp himself.
Shaqiri had made the Albanian eagle symbol during World Cup
Shaqiri is an ethnic Albanian from Kosovo.
It fought a war of independence against Serbia, and was finally granted so in 2008.
During the World Cup, Shaqiri had made an eagle sign after scoring a goal against Serbia, which represented the Albanian flag.
This had reportedly angered Serbians.
For the same reason, he has been dropped from the match against Serbian club Red Star.
FIFA had fined Shaqiri for the gestures
Notably, the Liverpool star was fined CHF 10,000 ($10,130) by FIFA, with "unsporting behavior contrary to the principles of fair-play" being cited as the reason. However, FIFA had refrained from sanctioning a two-match ban on him.
Klopp's comments on leaving Shaqiri out of the squad
Jurgen Klopp has confirmed this news himself.
On being asked about the decision, Klopp said that the team wanted to fully concentrate on the match and could not entertain any distractions.
Regarding Liverpool's stance, he said, "We have no political message, absolutely not. We want the focus to be on a great game of football, free from anything else".
Liverpool's position in the Champions League this term
Liverpool are currently sitting on the top of their Group C table with six points from three matches.
They won their first match against Paris Saint-Germain with a scoreline of 3-2, lost 0-1 against Napoli, and defeated Red Star Belgrade 4-0.
Naby Keita and Dejan Lovren have recovered from their injuries and are expected to travel to Belgrade for the match.