- Werner has gone 12 games without scoring
- Chelsea host Manchester City on Sunday
Frank Lampard has backed Timo Werner to regain his composure in front of goal and make a positive impact when Chelsea host Manchester City on Sunday. Although Werner had a reputation as one of the best strikers in Europe when he joined Chelsea last summer, he has struggled recently and has gone 12 games without a goal for club and country.
The former RB Leipzig forward has looked drained of confidence and, having been substituted at half-time during last Saturday’s defeat to Arsenal, he was dropped for the draw with Aston Villa two days later. Although Werner’s form has been a concern for Chelsea, who have won one of their past five games, Lampard believes that the 24-year-old’s work on his finishing in training will pay off.
“Every player goes through tough times in front of goal,” Chelsea’s manager said. “The beauty is that he has been getting chances because that is definitely a positive. I found work on the training ground to be the only way to turn that; simple work and repetition of finishing, which Timo is doing.
“When you work like that it is a matter of time because his natural attributes will get him in front of goal and away from defenders. If his confidence comes down from missing a couple, that is only natural. It is my job to help him with his confidence. I feel the goals will come.”
One of the criticisms of Werner, who has eight goals this season, is that he struggles against deep defences. The German could have more space on the break against City, although Lampard believes the striker’s threat is far from one-dimensional.
“I think Timo’s attributes can be very powerful on the counterattack but there are lots of things that we need in the game against City, on and off the ball,” he said. “He is always a huge weapon on that and I think he will become a huge weapon against low blocks. Sometimes the onus is on us to get the ball in the right areas.”
Lampard added that Chelsea could look to trim their squad this month. Atlético Madrid are interested in Marcos Alonso, who is out of favour at left-back, but they may only be able to afford a loan.
Chelsea will also look to offload one of their five centre-backs. Fikayo Tomori could leave on loan, with Newcastle among a number of clubs interested, unless a buyer is found for Antonio Rüdiger.