How will Timo Werner fit this season with Chelsea FC?

It has a been tumultuous summer transfer market for Chelsea who have been one of the most active teams to date. One player who had been mentioned regularly prior to joining the Blues was Timo Werner. The German came off a career year who had been consistently mentioned to join Liverpool. Chelsea, who hardly were mentioned caught many people by surprise.

When a player such as Werner is available to be signed, a club who has the necessary funds should do what is possible to obtain their signature and commitment. If they wait too long to make a decision, other teams will grasp at the opportunity to acquire some of the best talent available in the transfer market. 

Over the past couple weeks prior to joining Chelsea, it was widely rumoured that Liverpool was in pole position to sign Werner. The Reds were reluctant to pay his full release clause of nearly €53 million euros and had yet to offer a contract to the forward.  Inter Milan and Juventus were also interested, but Chelsea seem to be willing to pay the full release clause and offer a five-year deal worth 10 million per year in wages. 

The late move by Chelsea caught many people by surprise and has shown that they are committed to signing one of the best up-and-coming players. Before signing Werner, in the past 12 months, Chelsea had only signed Mateo Kovaĉić and Hakim Ziyech. The transfer ban may have been a blessing in disguise as the club acquired a player who will help in many different ways.  Chelsea’s willingness to put pen to paper for the forward has Werner convinced in the project they have setup and Lampard playing a major role in convincing the German in what they plan to do moving forward.

While Liverpool continued to stall in signing Werner, Chelsea was lurking in the dark and wasted no time, pouncing on the opportunity. With the forward now part of the club, Chelsea fans have much to be excited about. What can they expect from the Leipzig forward?

Frank Lampard will be getting a player who should nicely fit his style of play. The Chelsea manager prefers to play direct attacking football, but the Blues have really struggled to finish their chances this season. Chelsea averaged 16.6 shots per game while only scoring 1.7 goals per game. Tammy Abraham has contributed 15 goals, but is the only player on the squad to find the back of the goal more than ten times in the English Premier League.  Willian who no longer is with the squad was second with six goals. The inability to find consistent scoring from other players has been a major issue for Lampard.  

Werner has flourished under manager Julian Nagelsmann, who’s been able to develop the forward’s game this season. Currently playing in a 4-4-2 formation, Werner showed to be very consistent, which is a rare quality to find in young players. The forward has scored many goals this season with his great movement and ability to strike the ball with great power and accuracy. The striker scored 28 goals in the Bundesliga, who was second in the league behind Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski. 

In the previous two Bundesliga campaigns, where he played as a wide forward, he averaged 3.6 shots per 90 minutes. In recent seasons he’s managed to get to the net and create opportunities for him and his teammates. This year, playing as a false nine, he’s averaged 3.6 shots per game and has improved his goal-scoring rate, averaging 0.71 goals per 90 minutes.  

Last season, Bayern Munich decided not to make a move for the forward, which has worked out well for the young forward.  Playing another season under Nagelsmann has helped Werner become a more complete player.

“Nagelsmann has said that I won’t be playing as an out-and-out striker for him as much, but more of a false 9,” Werner said.

“It has encouraged me to improve and develop myself, even when we come up against oppositions that sit deep. He’s helped me to make better use of space.”

Werner’s flexibility will provide Lampard positional versatility.  He will allow the Chelsea manager the option to play different formations, including the 4-3-3.  While Lampard has used various formations this season, the 4-3-3 is his preferred option. Werner will be a viable replacement for Pedro and Willian who are no longer with the club, and the forward has shown he can play on either wing, as a striker and as a false nine. 

Watch: Timo Werner apologises to Kai Havertz after opting to shoot not pass  - Planet Football
Could we see Werner lineup out wide next to Kai Havertz? (Image Source – Planet Football)

Lampard’s current options include Abraham as the striker, Christian Pulisic and Callum Hudson Odoi on either wing and Ziyech who could play as a right winger, a ten, or an eight. New addition, Kai Havertz could be used on the right wing or as an attacking midfielder, yet both players are capable of playing together up front. They have the ability to score and the experience of playing together for the German International squad.

Lampard has an abundance of players that offer positional versatility, which gives the manager many options to choose from. With so many competitions to be played, it never hurts to have more bodies in the line up as injuries do occur throughout the season. 

The scoring should vastly improve the most for Chelsea. Werner’s great movement will create more space for Abraham to work with and should result in more scoring opportunities.  Abraham’s physical strength up front and ability to play behind the defense should allow him room to separate him from the defense and have more chances to score. 

While Werner is not the most physical player, he has shown he can score at a prolific rate. He has scored 78 goals in 127 Bundesliga appearances with Leipzig over the past four campaigns. Goal scoring will no longer be an area of concern for Lampard as with a player of this caliber at his disposal. A new chapter is about to begin in Werner’s life and one which he will most certainly embrace. 

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