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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

RB Leipzig star Werner even more dangerous after adding to his game, says Nagelsmann

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The manager believes his striker’s display at Mainz is proof he has developed more awareness to go with his speed

Timo Werner has become all the more unpredictable for defences, according to RB Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann.

Germany international Werner was in lethal form on Sunday, scoring his third Bundesliga hat-trick of the season as Leipzig crushed struggling Mainz 5-0 away from home.

It took his tally to 24 in the league this term, a new personal best for the 24-year-old, who has been strongly linked with a move to Liverpool.

Much of Werner’s career has been played from the left flank or on that side of the attack, but this term he has more regularly taken up central positions.

Nagelsmann feels Werner’s ability to combine the skills required in those differing roles with his pace is helping him get the better of defences, as he did once again on Sunday.

“Timo now has a good sense not only of letting himself attack on the wing, but also of going into the No. 10’s position,” Nagelsmann said after the Mainz win.

“Coupled with his speed, this makes him more variable and more difficult for his opponents to get to grips with him.”

Leipzig had little difficulty sweeping Mainz aside and were 3-0 up by half-time. Their ruthless approach to the contest, effectively having the three points wrapped up by the 36th minute, impressed Nagelsmann.

He said: “We cleared things up relatively quickly. It was a very confident performance against Mainz.

“I really liked not only the result, but also the way it occurred here.”

Werner added: “We played very well from the first minute and put pressure on the whole game.

“We absolutely wanted to secure the important three points for the qualification for the Champions League next season.”

Leipzig’s sports director Markus Krosche told Sky: “Today we have created a lot of opportunities again and this time we turned them into goals – we can be satisfied with that. Overall, it was a very good game.”

Victory put Leipzig back up to third, leaving them seven points adrift of the summit.

But with the top two, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, set to face each other on Tuesday, the title race could have been blown wide open before Leipzig play against Hertha Berlin the following day.

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