By 90Min
May 18, 2018

Stoke City winger Xherdan Shaqiri appears to be on the verge of leaving the Potters, following their Premier League exit.

The Staffordshire outfit could only manage a 19th-place finish this season and will be playing their football in the Championship in August after winning just seven league games all term.

Shaqiri, reported a target for Spurs, West Ham, Everton and Crystal Palace, has a £12m clause in his contract that permits him to move away now that Stoke has suffered the drop. And he has spoken to the Sun regarding his future, insisting he wants to play in the Champions League.

"It is important for me to find a club where the manager and directors all want me to sign," he declared. "It will be all the better if this club is playing in Europe. It is any footballer's great aim to play in the Champions League.

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"I will always be thankful to Stoke, as my time with them has been the most educational spell of my career."

The 26-year-old Swiss international credits the Potters his development, especially on the defensive end of things, as he claims to have never concentrated on that aspect of the game before his move from Inter.

"I've been able to establish myself in the Premier League, and the club stood by me even when things didn't go well for me," he continued.

"Above all I've learned how to defend properly. Previously I always played for teams that were set up to attack in Basel, Bayern and Inter. I have matured as a person as well as a player. That is the reason I have provided more goals and assists than before - although I'd have sooner got one less and we'd have stayed up.

Despite being one of Stoke's better players during the ill-fated campaign, Shaqiri has admitted that he had his shortcomings as well and isn't even getting a proper night's sleep due to the way things turned out.

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"No-one is perfect," he said. "I didn't play well in every game, and all of us - players, staff and management - made mistakes."

"I'm not sleeping well for the moment. I feel sorry for the Stoke fans, the club and the people who work for it.

"It's now important for Stoke to draw lessons from the season so they can hopefully return to the Premier League as soon as possible."

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