Liverpool snapped up Xherdan Shaqiri following Stoke’s relegation out of the Premier League, but Charlie Adam claims the Swiss star “never turned up” for the Potters when the chips were down.
With a top-flight standing under threat in 2017-18, those at the bet365 Stadium were looking to star turns for inspiration.
They found very little, with Shaqiri among those to have seen his attitude questioned after doing little to halt a slide towards the Championship.
Liverpool still saw enough in the mercurial 26-year-old to trigger a £13 million ($17m) release clause in his contract, but they have been warned that the former Inter and Bayern Munich forward has a tendency to go missing.
Stoke midfielder Adam told talkSPORT when quizzed on Shaqiri and whether he underperformed when it mattered most: “Was he one of them? Oh, definitely.
“When the chips are down you look at your big players, you want your big players to bring magic in one moment in the season, and it times we felt like the so-called big players in the squad never turned up for us and never performed.
“Yeah, everybody else could help, but for all the plaudits the so-called bigger players were getting from certain members of the management staff last season – they weren’t producing.
“But, listen, he’s gone now. We move on and we look to the future. The future for us at the moment is in the Championship.”
Jurgen Klopp will be hoping for plenty of moments like that in 2018-19, with Shaqiri forming part of an elaborate summer refresh at Anfield which has seen Naby Keita and Fabinho join the ranks and a record-breaking £67m deal for Brazil international goalkeeper Alisson edge closer to completion .