Jurgen Klopp is being tipped to revisit Liverpool interest in Timo Werner as he looks to bring in a potential replacement for Sadio Mane.
The Senegalese forward departed Anfield earlier this month after six hugely-successful seasons on Merseyside. Departing for Bayern Munich, Mane was described as a legend by the club. And his £35m sale earned Liverpool almost the exact fee they paid for him in 2016.
Replacing Mane’s goals would be a significant problem for plenty of clubs, though seemingly not Liverpool. Their succession plan was already in place with Luis Diaz arriving in January and Darwin Nunez signing for a club-record fee prior to Mane’s sale.
However, with Divock Origi departing for AC Milan and Takumi Minamino to Monaco, Klopp suddenly has less attacking options than expected.
To redress the balance, Liverpool are reportedly looking at another attacker to bring in. To that end, Tuesday’s Euro Paper Talk claims talks over a deal for Serge Gnabry are ‘fluid’ with Bayern Munich.
However, it’s now being suggested that Klopp should instead look to Werner.
The Reds chased the Germany forward hard two summers ago when it became evident he was leaving RB Leipzig. Indeed, Liverpool were strong favourites to sign him until a late change of heart saw Chelsea pinch his signing.
However, Werner struggled to adapt to the Premier League and soon lost his place at Chelsea. His debut season saw him score 12 goals in 52 appearances, with then boss Frank Lampard struggling to get the best out of him.
The 2021/22 campaign did not go much better either. This time around Werner managed 11 goals in 37 games, but rarely was afforded the option to play up front.
Klopp can get the best out of Germany forward
However, pundit Alan Hutton still thinks Werner can resurrect his career with a move to Liverpool.
With the Reds seeking a Mane replacement, Hutton believes Werner may prove the answer. And, speaking to Football Insider, he reckons the player would thrive in Klopp’s system.
“I think Werner can bring something with his pace and his trickery,” Hutton said.
“I think he could fit into the system. If you look at the way Liverpool have played over the years Klopp has been there, he likes that type of winger coming in from the side of the pitch and I think that’s where he’s better.
“I don’t think Werner’s an out and out number nine to me. I think he misses too many opportunities but he’s a problem out on the wing. He’s a problem for defenders, the way Mane was. And obviously with him leaving there’s possibly room.
“I’d be very surprised if Chelsea just let him go. With Lukaku leaving they won’t want to leave themselves short so I can’t see it happening.”
Liverpool can do better than Timo Werner
Truth be told, we just can’t see Werner at Anfield anymore. When Liverpool were chasing him back in summer 2020, it seemed a foregone conclusion he would end up on Merseyside.
Ultimately, though, Klopp and his coaching staff opted against the move. At the time, the transfer was seen as Liverpool’s loss and Chelsea’s gain.
However, like so many costly Chelsea transfers, Werner has simply not worked out at Stamford Bridge. To that end, he won’t be the first and nor will he be the last.
Instead of signing Werner, Liverpool went on to buy Diogo Jota from Wolves. At the time, there were plenty who raised their eyebrows at his £40m transfer.
But the move for Jota over Timo Werner has certainly paid dividends for the Reds.
Furthermore, with Diaz, Nunez and, as it stands, Mohamed Salah still on their books, Liverpool look unlikely to make another forward signing.
Instead, they will turn to youth whenever required. Upcoming talent, Kaide Gordon, will surely be afforded more chances. The Reds also brought in another teenager in Fabio Carvalho, who may also play his part.