Is this summer target the one that really got away for Liverpool?

Xherdan Shaqiri

The inability to sign Xherdan Shaqiri is looking more and more costly for the Reds.

Of all the summer targets Liverpool were linked with that didn't make the move to Anfield, Alexis Sanchez was probably the one that hurt them the most.

Phil Thompson at one point even announced that the Barcelona man's switch to the Reds was all but a done deal. Now, he is scoring week in, week out for Arsenal.

Xherdan Shaqiri comes a close second, however, and considering the fact that the 23-year-old is yet to leave Bayern Munich, his capture would have been a more realistic prospect anyway.

Liverpool's struggles are now such that they no longer need to be described in detail. One look at how Brendan Rodgers' side are failing to function on the pitch tells you everything you need to know.

Which makes Liverpool's inability to push harder to recruit Shaqiri in the summer all the more difficult to swallow.

The Swiss midfielder is believed to have been considered A) not good enough for the Reds and B) too expensive.

But look at how Rodgers used the money he could have spent on the 23-year-old... Lazar Markovic cost Liverpool £20 million and has looked unfathomably bad. Even if the 20-year-old comes good, why wasn't that money used for someone proven at the top level that could bed in much quicker?

Liverpool also spent £25 million more on Adam Lallana, who looks a good player but is currently in and out of the team, suggesting the Reds were prepared to splash the cash on someone not even guaranteed a place in their starting XI.

At the moment, it looks as though Shaqiri, who has pace & skill in abundance, as well as a deadly eye for goal, was the one that got away for the Anfield side this summer. And, if there were any doubts about his quality, there is no way he could have done worse than some of Liverpool's eventual signings have since moving to Merseyside.

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch