'It's no secret I want to leave' - Shaqiri wants Premier League move

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The Switzerland international star has no intention of playing in the Championship next term and is instead seeking a switch back to the top flight

Xherdan Shaqiri is set on leaving Stoke City in the transfer window and would like to join a Premier League club.

The Switzerland international scored eight goals in the top flight in 2017-18 but was unable to save his side from relegation to the Championship.

Shaqiri, who reportedly has a release clause of £13.5 million that has become active following Stoke's drop to the second tier, is said to have attracted the interest of Everton.

Although he does not want to discount a move elsewhere in Europe, the forward admits he would love to stay in England.

"It is no secret that I will leave the club," he told Aargauer Zeitung.

"I think the [English] league is perfect for me. I would love to stay in England but I don't want to rule anything out. It's the best league with the best players."

Shaqiri's immediate focus is on Switzerland's World Cup preparations, with friendlies against Spain and Japan to come before they begin their campaign in Russia against Brazil on June 17.

The former Bayern Munich man is a fan of the Selecao, dating back to the 1998 finalists, and believes Tite's team must be considered among the favourites to triumph this year.

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"Maybe they've lost some of their value in recent years because of a lack of success," he said. "But, for me, they'll always be one of the most exciting teams and one of the big favourites for the trophy.

"I cried when Brazil lost the final to France and Ronaldo was injured. I wanted a Ronaldo shirt for my birthday – he was always one of my favourite players. Luckily, 2002 [when they won the tournament] was better.

"I'm still a big fan of Brazil, but I won't cry if they lose to Switzerland!"

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