Timo Werner has played his final Bundesliga match, scoring twice on the last day of the season to help seal RB Leipzig’s third place finish and spot in next year’s Champions League. It was his parting gift after four years and 95 goals for the team.
There had been some question about Leipzig’s current Champions League campaign and whether Timo would be able to represent them in the quarterfinals, but by agreeing to join Chelsea, it had become apparent that the would not be around by the time those games took place at long last in August. Werner has come under some criticism for that decision because we must have drama in football, even though it’s largely common sense that he would not be able to play for his old team after joining his new team.
And as Timo confirmed this weekend, the transfer will become official in just a couple days, on July 1, as usual in non-pandemic circumstances.
“Of course it hurts me that I can’t help out [RB Leipzig] to play in the Champions League. But I’m a Chelsea FC player from July 1st and I’m being paid by Chelsea from then on.
“It was clear that all parties — Chelsea, RB and my side — should and must settle this. Of course I tried to keep out of the Champions League issue as much as I could because it was clear that I would have to hurt one side. That’s why my agent finally agreed it with the clubs.
“I am forever connected to Leipzig and RB, will sit in front of the TV during the quarter finals and keep my fingers crossed — maybe I can even be on site in Lisbon.”
-Timo Werner; source: Sportbuzzer via Evening Standard
The last eight of the Champions League will be conducted tournament-style and will be held in Lisbon. Chelsea are not invited thanks to our 3-0 deficit after the first-leg of the Round of 16 against Bayern Munich, but perhaps we’ll engineer yet another miracle in Munich and we can join the party.
Werner won’t be eligible to play for Chelsea until the actual start of next season, in either Europe or the Premier League — same for Hakim Ziyech — , but he should be able to join training at his earliest convenience, once he finishes his post-season vacation (assuming he goes on one after a three-month lockdown break).