Timo Werner and Liverpool seemed such an obvious fit. He is a quick, mobile striker capable of dropping straight into Jurgen Klopp’s system at Anfield and a player, with a reported £49 million release clause at RB Leipzig, who would also mirror the club’s policy of finding value in an inflated market.
The Germany international is admired by Klopp, and Werner hasn’t been shy in praising the Liverpool manager and his team in recent months — with several public comments from the 24-year-old highlighting the positive qualities of Klopp and the side. But barring a very late bid by Liverpool to reenter the race and hijack Chelsea’s move for Werner, one of the most sought-after talents in European football will be plying his trade at Stamford Bridge next season rather than at Anfield.
Sources have told ESPN that Chelsea have agreed to activate the £49m clause, while Liverpool’s interest in Werner has cooled in recent weeks. The full cost of the deal — £200,000 a week in wages over a six-year contract — had become an issue for Liverpool, but if Werner had set his heart on a move to Anfield, a compromise could have been reached.
However, Werner also had reservations about moving to Liverpool despite the obvious attractions of playing for the reigning European champions and Premier League champions-elect. That reluctance is a warning sign to the Reds about the challenges they now face in terms of establishing themselves as the dominant force in English football.
Werner hinted at his dilemma in March, when he admitted that he would have to consider his next step carefully.
“At this time in professional soccer there are two different variations,” he told Sky Sports. “The first is to be part of a team like Liverpool or Manchester City. They have a good working team. The teams have also great coaches. But this is the question: Do you want to go to that kind of team, because the situation is already that hard for each member and you want to be a part of it? That’s one point you have to look at.customized nfl jerseys
“The other side are teams that need some big changes, because they just won a few big titles, but they are not able to compete at the highest level anymore. For me, Manchester United is one of these teams. So at this point of my career I’m asking myself: Do I want to be part of a new team, to build up something new, or do I want to stay at my team and make something great?”
The answer seems to be that Werner wants to help build something new at Chelsea rather than fight for the right to play at Liverpool and help Klopp’s team build a dynasty.nfl nike jersey cheap
Eden Hazard made a similar decision in 2012 when, having spent months in talks with Manchester City and Manchester United, he instead signed for Chelsea, who had just won the Champions League after finishing sixth, 25 points behind City and United, in the Premier League. City and United were the established “Big Two” at the time, but few can argue that Hazard made the wrong call considering he won six major trophies, including two Premier League titles, during his seven years at Stamford Bridge.
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By landing Werner, Chelsea have delivered a statement of intent, but they have been able to offer the forward an unobstructed path into the team, which Liverpool simply couldn’t do.