|Shaqiri was born in Gnjilane, SFR Yugoslavia (now Kosovo). He moved to Basel, Switzerland as a child and played for SV Augst and FC Basel's youth team. While on Basel's youth team, he played in the Under-15 Nike Cup 2007 and was named the best player of the tournament, and, despite having several other clubs attempting to sign him, he decided to stay with Basel. Just two years later, Shaqiri signed his first professional contract with Basel on 2 January 2009. The contract will keep him at St. Jakob-Park until January 2011. He made his Basel debut as a substitute in the Basel's season opening game of the 2009–10 season against FC St. Gallen on 12 July 2009, at the AFG Arena. On 9 November, he scored his first goal for Basel in a 4–1 win over Neuchâtel Xamax at home.
In 2010 the young skillful player was linked with Arsenal, Internazionale, Barcelona and PSV Eindhoven. It is believed that Arsène Wenger is keeping tabs on the Swiss prodigy by sending his scouts to watch him. Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has also shown interest in the talented young winger with rumours that a fee has already been agreed with the two clubs.
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