Behind the numbers: Reported Chelsea signing Werner

Timo Werner to Chelsea
Photo by Ina Fassbender/Pool via Getty Images
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Timo Werner to Chelsea.

This could be something to behold.

If reports are to be believed and Werner is headed to London, the Blues have grabbed a major win over perceived fellow suitors Liverpool.

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Werner has a reported $62 million release clause which was set to expire later this month, and strikers of his ilk have cost more than that in pre-pandemic markets.

That’s still a lot of money and would sit just outside the Top 25 transfers in PL history, but it’s also just over half a Joao Felix or Antoine Griezmann. It’s a little more than Luka Jovic and almost $10 million less than Romelu Lukaku.

Liverpool is understood to have been Werner’s No. 1 choice, but the Reds wouldn’t meet the release clause in the current fiscal climate. That’s understandable, but it’s also one of the few chances the Reds had to upgrade on Roberto Firmino (and, sorry Reds fans, it’s an upgrade).

So what does it mean for Chelsea and how will the German perform once adapted to the Premier League?

Werner turned 24 in early March and has 11 goals in 29 caps for Germany. His club record is exceptional with 92 goals and 39 assists for Leipzig after 14 and 11 with boyhood club Stuttgart.

He can move out wide, preferring the left to the right, but is a center forward of the highest order. Chelsea’s myriad young playmakers like Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech could provide the ingredients for a feast.

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Taking into account that Werner plays in a different league with more goals per game, let’s compare his numbers to the top striker for each of the PL’s top teams.

The field is Werner, current Chelsea No.1 Tammy Abraham, Roberto Firmino, Jamie Vardy, Marcus Rashford, Sergio Aguero, Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang, and Raul Jimenez.

He does very, very well.

Minutes-per-goal: 96.04 (2nd to Aguero)
Minutes-per-goal-or-assist: 75.03 (2nd to Aguero)
Shots/game: 3.8 (1st)
Key passes/game: 1.4 (t-1st with Jimenez)
Dribbles/game: 1.7 (3rd to Rashford, Jimenez)
Passing: 75.8 percent (4th to Firmino, Rashford, Aguero)
Passes/game: 27.8 (2nd to Firmino)
Crosses/game: 0.5 (2nd to Aubameyang)
xG: 21.3 (1st by six goals)
xG+xA/90: 1.12 (2nd to Aguero)

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And here’s a dated state from before the pause that we absolutely love, as Werner leads Europe’s top five leagues in goals scored carrying the ball at least five meters.