Timo Werner may not have gotten on the scoresheet in his first official game for Chelsea, but he was instrumental in the Blues starting the season on the right foot, with three points and three goals away to Brighton in Monday’s 3-1 victory.
As in the friendly last month, Werner was key to opening the scoring. He didn’t actually score the penalty — Jorginho’s still the designated taker, and with good reason — but Timo was in full Turbo mode as he got to the overhit pass just ahead of the Brighton goalkeeper, who could do little more than to wipe out the Chelsea man.
As it turns out, that contact left a literal mark on our summer arrival, one he felt throughout the rest of the match.
“The knee of the goalkeeper hit me directly in the muscle and it went very hard. The rest of the game it hurt a lot. I couldn’t do some movements because the muscle went very hard, but at the end I’m happy that we won.”
“I don’t care about this. In one week it will be good. We did a good game today, we did well, and I’m happy I won the penalty because it was important for our game.”
Despite being limited by the dead leg, Werner was still a threat, and was kept off the scoresheet more so by our own inability to find him with a properly timed pass than anything Brighton may or may not have done to him.
Werner reflected on those growing pains as well, expecting that such issues will go away once everyone gets more fit and more used to playing with each other.
“We can do much better than we did today. A lot of players on our team haven’t played any games this season, so we are maybe not as strong as we will be. But I think in the next few weeks, we will get very fit and very confident when we win more games like today. We will have a very strong team this season.”
Those fixable issues aside, Werner’s debut certainly went well. Adjusting to Premier League life isn’t always easy or straightforward, but he’s off to a good start.
“Premier League is different football. I never played against three defenders like this, so tall, big, massive defenders.
“But the game for me is really fun because especially in the first half I had a lot of space where I can do my runs. I think when we go like this and make the passes we missed today we’ll get a lot of chances.”
We’ll certainly put that theory to the test next weekend, as Liverpool come to Stamford Bridge for our first home match of the season. Chelsea played very well against the Premier League champions on all four occasions last season, in the UEFA Super Cup, in both league meetings, and of course in the FA Cup when we eliminated them. With Werner ready to show Liverpool what they missed out on this summer, we could be in for some fun.
And yes, of course he’ll be ready.
“Of course – for games like this, you’re always fit.”