Liverpool have been consistently linked with a move for Timo Werner in recent months but the conclusion of an agreement between the Reds and RB Leipzig appears to hinge on how the player in question approaches his contract situation in 2019.
Werner, one of the most coveted strikers in European football, is currently tied down to a contract which expires in June 2020. Naturally, RB Leipzig would prefer to sell him in the summer window and make a huge profit on the £12.6 million they paid for him in 2016 rather than risk lose him for nothing when his current deal expires, however, they have not given up hope of tying him down to a new deal.
According to a report from Bild (via ESPN), RB Leipzig have submitted a contract offer to Werner, which contains a tailor-made release clause in the region of €70 million (£61 million) available to just 10 elite sides, including both Liverpool and Manchester City.
With Pep Guardiola and Txiki Begiristain firmly invested in the hunt for a new defensive midfielder, there is not an overwhelming stack of evidence to suggest that City would be inclined to trigger that particular clause. But, with Sergio Aguero set to turn 31 in the summer and question marks lingering over Gabriel Jesus’ credentials to step into his shoes, there is reason to suggest they could be interested in a future deal for Werner.
The 22-year-old has publicly declared his admiration for both of Manchester’s giants in the past (as per Daily Express) and that fact combined with both City’s financial power and their future need for a new number nine suggests that a £61 million deal is one they would take under serious consideration.
Liverpool, on the other hand, proved they are willing to match City in the transfer market by clinching big-money deals for Virgil Van Dijk, Alisson and Fabinho in 2018, although the sale of Philippe Coutinho can partly explain their handful of extortionate splurges.
But Werner is under no obligation to accept the proposed contract renewal and he may feel that signing it will deter his chances of sealing a move away from the club; RB Leipzig will almost certainly be forced to accept a fee below £61 million if he has just one year remaining on his deal when the summer window comes round.
Considering Werner’s record at RB Leipzig, which currently stands at 55 goals and 20 assists from 100 appearances, his huge scope for improvement and his present circumstances in Germany, both Man City and Liverpool should be seriously weighing up a summer bid, even if that entails triggering a release clause around the €70 million mark.
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