Timo Werner is currently in a run of 14 Premier League matches without a goal. After years of consistent goal-scoring in the Bundesliga, it has been a difficult adjustment to a new country. That said, no player has registered more goal contributions in the Premier League than Werner. The German international has four goals and five assists. This shows how the goals are spread across the Blues’ squad and how the 24-year-old is still important, despite his lack of consistency. Further to his contributions, the striker has won four penalties in the league this season, seven across all competitions. No Chelsea player has ever won more in a single season and there are still plenty of matches left to play.
It isn’t surprising that Thomas Tuchel has shown faith in his fellow countryman since taking over from Frank Lampard. Werner has started the last three matches and there have been positive signs in each of them, even if he hasn’t managed to get on the scoresheet. He has had seven shots, totalling 1.01 expected goals (xG). The German is averaging 2.81 shots, 1.41 key passes, 0.36 xG and 0.26 expected assists (xA) per ninety minutes under his new manager. These are all improvements on his season averages, except the xG per ninety has fallen from 0.44.
Those that look at his goal returns alone will see a player that is still struggling. However, Chelsea fans will be seeing an improvement from their summer signing and there will now be more belief that he can be a success in a blue shirt. He was one of the standout players in the weekend’s win over Sheffield United. Werner got the assist for Mason Mount and it was his movement that led to the award of the penalty for the winner.
The confidence is slowly creeping back into his game, as he clearly feels valued by Tuchel. His movement in recent matches has been improving quickly and it is only a matter of time before he gets back to scoring ways. Werner is too good to continue blanking and at the age of 24, he will be learning a lot about his own game from his recent barren run.
It can take time for players to adapt to Premier League football. The uncertainty over his role in the team, coupled with the managerial uncertainty at Chelsea have both hampered Werner. In hindsight, it looks like he was signed without a clearly defined role in mind and that will have damaged his confidence.
In Tuchel, he has a manager that will be more familiar with his game and it is clear that he will be the preferred striking option. Werner has featured in 256 minutes since his compatriot arrived in the Stamford Bridge dugout. Meanwhile, Olivier Giroud (143) and Tammy Abraham (57) have been less involved. The latter was a favourite of Lampard, but it does look like he will be less prominent under the new regime at the club.
The coming months will be crucial in defining Werner’s season. It is difficult to defend a striker that hasn’t scored a Premier League since the beginning of November, but he continues to contribute. The fact that he has had more goal involvements than any other player in the squad underlines this. We haven’t seen the best of the 24-year-old in the Premier League yet, but the recent promising signs suggest the end of the season could be an exciting one for the former RB Leipzig man.