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 By Ben Gladwell

Bayern selling Xherdan Shaqiri to Inter at a 'discount' - Rummenigge

Xherdan Shaqiri has recorded two assists in nine Serie A appearances for Inter Milan.

Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge says his club did Inter Milan a favour by selling them Xherdan Shaqiri since they could have earned more by selling the Swiss midfielder to England.

Shaqiri joined the Nerazzurri during the winter transfer window on an initial loan deal which becomes obligatorily permanent in the summer.

The transfer will cost Inter in the region of €15 million -- less than the money Liverpool had reportedly offered the Bavarians.

"This is the deal we have," Rummenigge said. "We could have earned more by selling him to England, so we've given Inter a discount."

According to the former Inter player, Rummenigge not only did the Serie A club a favour, but he also acted in the best interests of the player.

"Shaqiri needed to be playing regularly and I advised him to go to Inter, even though there were lots of English clubs interested," Rummenigge told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"Given the troubles Inter are having, they've hit the jackpot by signing him. He's got quality, he's young and he is capable of making a difference.

"He's going to become even more stable as time goes by because he just needs to feel good and feel he's at home."

While Shaqiri has had a positive impact for the Nerazzurri, the same cannot be said about Lukas Podolski, who will almost certainly return to Arsenal at the end of his loan spell in the summer with Inter unlikely to exercise their option on the Germany international.

"I'm sorry because I know his performances haven't been up to much while at the same time he keeps delivering for the national team," Rummenigge said. "Maybe he's suffering from the fact that he needs to have room to work in and you don't get that room in Italy."

Lukas Podolski has yet to open his goalscoring account for Inter Milan.

That room is being found by two other former Bayern Munich players in Serie A, however. Roberto Soriano only ever featured in Bayern's youth teams before they allowed him to join Sampdoria in 2009.

"Maybe we underestimated him," Rummenigge said. "It happens that some young players improve as they grow. Maybe we got it wrong at Bayern to allow him to league. We don't get everything right."

The other is Luca Toni, who is still scoring goals for Hellas Verona nearly five years after leaving Bayern for Genoa.

"He was here last week and we had a coffee together," Rummenigge said. "I told him to carry on playing. He's scoring a lot and I get the feeling he's in good shape. I said 'Luca, keep going while your legs keep carrying you.'

"We were happy with him -- we got him for 11 million when he was worth 25-30. We were the winners. He scored lots of goals for us and is still well liked in Munich."

One of Toni's 13 goals in Serie A this season earned Hellas a 2-2 draw at AC Milan while another secured them a 2-2 draw at the San Siro against Inter.

Picking up points in Milan appears to be easier than ever this season and this also concerns Rummenigge.

"If things carry on this way it will be a pity for Italian football and for European football," he said. "Clubs like Milan and Inter have big names and they belong in [European] competitions.

"Five years ago, Inter had their hands on the Champions League. But this is football. It can be strange at times, but something's gone wrong in the past five years."


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