Timo Werner has opened up on his decision to join Chelsea this summer, as well as the interest shown in him by Liverpool, as the two sides prepare to meet this weekend.
The Germany international looked like a shoo-in to complete a move to Liverpool, the Premier League champions and Jurgen Klopp having been long-term admirers of the RB Leipzig forward.
After scoring 34 goals in all competitions for the Bundesliga club last season, Werner was available for a relatively reasonable £50 million due to a release clause in his contract. However, Liverpool opted against making a move given the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, as well as the seemingly immovable presence of their established front three.
“In another world, it could have happened,” Werner told The Athletic of Liverpool’s interest. “If LFC call, you have to listen and think about it. They are one of the best teams on the world, with a super coach — a German coach to boot.
“Of course you think about that. But in the end, my decision went Chelsea’s way. Not because there was anything wrong with Liverpool. But at Chelsea, the whole package was a better fit for me.”
Werner made his Chelsea bow in last weeks 3-1 win over Brighton at the Amex, the 24-year-old putting in a lively performance as he led the line for Frank Lampard’s side.
The Blues boss, along with technical advisor Petr Cech, held personal discussions with the striker prior to his switch to Stamford Bridge, and Werner has admitted that his vision was already well-aligned with that of his new boss.
“He called me and we talked about his idea of football and his idea of how the way the team would look like,” Werner said. “It all sounded good to me, especially the way he talked to me.
“It wasn’t like, ‘I’m the coach and I want you. Please come!’ He was very relaxed, asking me how I saw things, how I felt about playing here or there. And I was able to voice my opinion as well. He listened.
“In many aspects, we were in close agreement. He wants to play a pressing game, taking the game to the opposition, with quick transitions but to be good in possession as well. He said, ‘Timo, you will be free to make the right moves on the pitch, I trust you.’ It was a very good conversation.”
Werner will come up against his former suitors on Sunday afternoon as he makes his home debut for Chelsea against the Premier League champions.