Tag Archives: RB Leipzig

Chelsea complete signing of Timo Werner

The 24-year-old German International Timo Werner will join the London side in July. 

Werner will see out the rest of the Bundesliga campaign with RB Leipzig. The player also announced his move on Twitter.

 

The forward has long been touted for a career at the top of the game since he broke through at Stuttgart and while he never hit huge numbers there was plenty of promise about him.  After turning 18 Werner signed a professional contract until June 2018 with VfB Stuttgart. He went on to score 13 goals in 95 league appearances, during which time he became the youngest player to make 50 Bundesliga appearances in the competition’s history. After the side were relegated he joined the then newly-promoted RB Leipzig in 2016.

He signed a four-year deal with a fee of 10 million euros- a club record at the time. Werner ended his first campaign with 21 Bundesliga goals as Leipzig qualified for the Champions League for the first time in their history. He is currently enjoying the most prolific season of his career so far having scored 32 goals and garnered 13 assists in 43 appearances in all competitions.

He has represented Germany at all youth levels (under-15’s through to under-21’s) scoring 34 goals in 48 matches. He has since scored 11 goals in 29 appearances for the senior national side.

Werner said:

“I am delighted to be signing for Chelsea, it is a very proud moment for me to be joining this great club. I of course want to thank RB Leipzig, the club and the fans, for four fantastic years. You will forever be in my heart. I look forward to next season with my new team-mates, my new manager and of course the Chelsea fans. Together we have a very successful future ahead of us.”

Chelsea Director Marina Granovskaia added:

We are very excited that Timo Werner has chosen to join Chelsea. He is a player who was coveted all over Europe and it is no surprise, he has that rare mix of being young and exciting and yet established and proven. We can’t wait to have Timo on board, but until then we wish him and RB Leipzig all the best for the rest of this season.”

Werner’s game plays off his pace and movement between the defensive lines. He is agile and able to find space regularly and his attacking runs are sure to cause many defences problems this season. He is certainly clinical and in a Chelsea side that have plenty of creative flair he is a player that could thrive under Lampard. With the addition of Hakim Ziyech they could have a formidable front three next season. After a positive first season Chelsea will be hoping to qualify for the Champions League, with it giving them to chance to attract more star players and build a title-winning formula under Lampard.

Julian Nagelsmann – The Wonderkid Coach

As football fans we always seem to discuss who will be the next top player and which young stars are likely to reach their potential. One thing fans don’t always talk about is coaches and that will be the focus for this article. Football is having what we could call a “transition” period – all the top clubs are having issues of their own. Real Madrid and Barcelona are not the same forces they used to be and are trying to get back to their own glory days, particularly in Europe. The same applies for Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Juventus and even Arsenal. Liverpool remain the only complete article in terms of an elite team, what this means is new clubs have been given the opportunity to push for success and new coaches are all vying to leave their imprint on a changing football landscape.

We’ve seen a trend in younger managers being appointed with the hope of long-term success: Mikel Arteta, Frank Lampard, Marco Rose and Erik Ten Hag are just some examples of younger coaches aiming to create their own philosophy and ethos. However, none of them are as young as 32-year-old Julian Nagelsmann who is currently the manager of RB Leipzig.

Nagelsmann made headlines in 2015 when he was appointed head coach of Hoffenheim at the staggeringly young age of 28 – the youngest ever Bundesliga head coach. Hoffenheim were embroiled in a relegation battle and the local media ridiculed the decision. The man nicknamed ‘Baby Mourinho’ by former Hoffenheim keeper Tim Wiese defied the odds and steered the club away from relegation. They won seven of their 14 remaining games to finish one point above the relegation play-off spot. They subsequently made key signings the next summer: Andrej Kramaric from Leicester, midfielders Lukas Rupp from Stuttgart and Kevin Vogt from Cologne, plus former Bayern Munich forward Sandro Wagner from Darmstadt. With the momentum carrying on, Nagelsmann guided them to 4th place and their first ever taste of Champions League football. He then guided them to 3rd in his next season, before struggling the season after as they finished down in 9th. 

It was at the end of this campaign that he signed a four-year deal with RB Leipzig on the 21st June 2019.  Nagelsmann’s success with RB Leipzig has been well documented.  He has been able to implement his attacking style of play on to a team with better players, Timo Werner has been the biggest beneficiary of his system.

At Hoffenheim, Nagelsmann primarily used a 5-3-2 formation with his players being able to rotate through positions to cover each flank. RB Leipzig focused on a pressing style of football, which allowed them to slow down and reduce attacking impetus. This enabled them to provide themselves with options for counter-attacking. They attacked through the middle using Niklas Sule or Sebastian Rudy, with their strikers laying the ball off. At Leipzig he’s been able to rotate between a back four and back five depending on the opponent. Like with Hoffenheim, his Leipzig team are able to play fluidly with players that can rotate positionally and that can press opponents off the ball to concentrate play on specific flanks in order to increase turnovers. Allowing his opposition to play using the touchline means they can set pressing traps by using their narrow shape to overload the targeted side and keep shape within transition. 

In attack they rely on diagonal passes being made available through the use of ‘U’ shapes within midfield. This allows Leipzig to utilise either two advanced midfielders including a deeper pivot, or have one of their strikers move into a deeper position with a midfielder pushing on.

Another crucial cog in Nagelsmann’s style of play is a target man. This allows him to have a player, which his team can use as an advanced pivot to start attacks or relieve pressure of the defense by holding up long balls. It also means they can break the lines in attack with the target man being able to play passes to advanced runners.

RB Leipzig aim to have five forwards in attack: utilising two wingers, two inside forwards and a central striker. This shape allows them to play short passes in and around the box and create spaces for through balls. Dynamic midfielders such as Christopher Nkunku and Marcel Sabitzer have really helped show how Nagelsmann’s system work well with technically gifted and expressive players.

Having a five at the back allows the wing-backs to join in attacks but when changing to a four man defence they can use the extra midfielders to use an even more narrow shape. The front two become more involved in the press but also serve as the catalysts for counter-attacks. The wide midfielders can subsequently tuck in to form a 4-2-2-2 shape. Emil Forsberg and Timo Werner can also rotate within a 4-2-3-1 in order to use Forsberg’s creative passing in central areas, with runners playing off him. The addition of Dani Olmo in January means that 4-2-2-2 is certainly more dynamic and again more fluency with the plethora of attacking players. Their defence has also been a key anchor point in their success. Dayot Upamecano, Nordi Mukiele and Lukas Klostermann are some of the best examples of the talent they possess defensively not to mention Tyler Adams who has shown vast improvement under Nagelsmann too. The RB Leipzig coach has shown his ability not only to fit players into his way of playing but also improve them within that system.

Nagelsmann has proved himself to be the best young manager in the world. His tactical versatility and ability to create fluid shapes has led him to great success already. This was typified with their Champions League victory over Spurs. The ‘baby Mourinho’ showed up his older counterpart as they played them off the park in both legs. While their title challenge has faltered this season with one too many draws, his side are showing plenty of promise and could very easily improve their push for the Bundesliga title next season. If they can keep hold of some of their key players or find suitable replacements, you could see RB Leipzig evolve into a strong side over the coming years. Whether Julian Nagelsmann stays with the German side or not, it will certainly be interesting to see how his career develops.

24/7 football Weekly transfer round-up

Hello and welcome to the 24/7 Football’s weekly transfer round up.

English Premier League is all set to return from 17th June amid the pandemic and the games are to be played behind the closed doors. Despite the pandemic, the football operations haven’t come to a halt and has filled the football world with the rumors.

The traditional top six will be looking to end their season with European spots whereas the newly promoted sides apart from Sheffield United will be looking to avoid the relegation. However, these factors will not stop the rumour mill from discussing potential gossip and deals surrounding footballers.

Here are the top transfer rumours of the week

1) Chelsea close in on Timo Werner

After a quiet transfer window in 2020, Chelsea are expected to reinforce their side with few quality signings. Frank Lampard’s side have reportedly closed in on signing the RB Leipzig striker, Timo Werner, after triggering the €60 million release clause for the German striker.

 

The move to Stamford Bridge will come as a surprise for the Liverpool fans as they expected German striker to sign for the Anfield outfit. However, it is learned that the release clause was the major deterrence for Liverpool to sign the German international.

Also Read: CHELSEA LOOK SET TO SIGN TIMO WERNER FROM RB LEIPZIG

2) Gunners reportedly agree personal terms with Thomas Partey

According to the reports published in football.london, Arsenal have agreed personal terms with the Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey.  The midfielder has been a long term target for the three-time Premier League winners and reports are suggesting that Arsenal have made the breakthrough in the transfer.

 

The Ghana international has been phenomenal for Rojiblancos and their manager, Diego Simeone is a huge admirer of the player. He has asked the club to give a new contract to the player and extend his stay at the Spanish capital. However, Arsenal remain determined to sign the midfielder and increase their midfield options.

Despite the speculations, there is one major roadblock for Arsenal to sign Thomas Partey. According to Goal.com, Thomas Partey has asked for Champions League qualification before agreeing to sign for the Emirates-based outfit. So the major question remains, can Arsenal seal the deal for the Atletico Madrid midfielder?

3) Ole Gunnar Solskjaer targets Argentine wonderkid

It is no brainer that Manchester United have turned their attention to sign the prodigies and wonderkids across the globe after they saw the effectiveness of Daniel James, Mason Greenwood and Brandon Williams in the Premier League. The low-risk signings have been a notable shift in Manchester United’s transfer policy and are expected to continue in the upcoming transfer windows.

 

According to Todo Fichajes, Manchester United are interested in signing the Argentine wonderkid, Thiago Almada from Velez Sarsfield. The player has a €22 million release clause and the Red Devils are willing to pay the hefty sum for the teenager’s signature. However, it has been revealed that Manchester United are not the only club looking to Almada but Arsenal, Manchester City and Atletico Madrid are also interested in the teenager. With this in mind, can the United Chief-Executive, Ed Woodward lure the player to Stretford End?

How can Home teams overcome lack of fans?

Could the way forward for football in England when it gets back to playing behind closed doors, consist of artificial crowd noise?

Well, daft as this may seem to some people, the English Football League is considering putting this to the Championship clubs, the majority of whom returned back to training on Monday.

One club, Bristol City are already discussing varying innovations at the club with Premier League Brighton also discussing the possibility of pumping crowd noise for their forthcoming games.

Already the broadcasters in Germany have offered the option of fake fan noise during RB Leipzig’s win at Mainz at the weekend, while Borussia Monchengladbach utilised 12,000 cardboard cut-outs of fans.

This begs the question, when the Championship along with the Premiership can get back to playing again? Albeit behind closed doors, do we really need the sound of fan noise pumped into an already empty stadium and cardboard cut outs as well?

Yes of course football will never be the same without actual fans at games, but remember we are currently living in a time when we must expect this practice never being seen again for a long time.

The thought of having artificial noise inside stadiums mainly to help the home side really isn’t working now. Take the Bundesliga for example. Since the restart of football in Germany, there has only been three home wins from 18 matches played. So, the theory of home teams having a big advantage even in games played behind closed doors simply doesn’t work.

Any games played behind closed doors offers a level playing field to both sides, and honestly, we don’t need pumped music, or fan noise during games along with cardboard cut outs of fans.

It’s certainly taken a little while for players to get used to the new experience of playing in front of empty stadiums, but they are used to it by now. They don’t need extra noise to improve their performances.

Fans will gradually get used to the sight of unfilled grounds with no noise. Unfortunately, it is a slow process of the way football is going to look for a long time to come. The message to football fans at the minute should be this, no noise and no actual fans at grounds is different, but in the present world we live in it has to be either this or no football played in front of anybody.

Article written by Peter Moore

Bundesliga marks return of professional football

The eyes of the football world were on Germany when the Bundesliga returned to action on Saturday.It became the first major league to return since football was suspended because of the coronavirus pandemic, with six fixtures on Saturday and a further two matches due to be played on Sunday. All games were played under heavy precautions laid out by the German Football League. A strict hygiene and safety protocol, including the ban of crowds, was necessary to get the go-ahead from political authorities.

Erling Braut Haaland scored for Borussia Dortmund as they marked the return of the Bundesliga during the coronavirus outbreak with a convincing derby win over Schalke. There was an eerie atmosphere at Dortmund’s iconic Signal Iduna Park stadium, with every shout by players or coaches audible, and social distancing protocol followed by substitutes and during goal celebrations.

There was a surprise in the Dortmund line up as English starlet Jadon Sancho was only on the substitutes bench. The Match started slowly with Schalke being the more aggressive early on, however it did not take long for Dortmund to take control. Haaland opened the scoring with a trademark cool finish, flicking home Thorgen Hazard’s cross to continue his sensational season, In the build up Julian Brandt pulled of a delightful touch to release Hazard,

Raphael Guerreiro added two more goals and Hazard also found the net as Dortmund went on to claim a comfortable win over their near neighbours and move within a point of leaders Bayern Munich, who play on Sunday.

In the days most interesting and dramatic matches of the day, title contenders RB Leipzig were held to a 1-1 draw by Freiburg. Freiburg took the lead after 34 minutes from a poorly defended corner by Vincenzo Grifo which was put in by Manuel Guide.

Leipzeg had most of the play throughout the match with a total of 22 shots on goals, there best chance shortly after the break when half time substitute and former Everton player Ademola Lookman was left unmarked and completely free but miskicked. Leipzig had more chances but Freiburg were defending very well. They found their equalizer after 77 minutes through Yussuf Poulsen’s header. It could have turned out worse for RB as Freiburg thought they had won it when Robin Koch headed home a free-kick, but the VAR correctly ruled the goal out for offside, football is back and so is the drama of VAR.

The dropped points mena Leipzig are four points behind Bayern Munich who have a game in hand and three behind Dortmund, they’ve also been overtaken by Borussia Mönchengladbach.