RB Leipzig’s chief executive claims he is “deeply relaxed” over Timo Werner’s future, with there being no signal at this stage that the striker wants to leave.
Whether that is accurate or not, given Werner has discussed the prospect of leaving Leipzig—and specifically to join Liverpool—on a number of occasions, is another matter entirely.
But Oliver Mintzlaff has provided a hopeful update on the 24-year-old ahead of the next transfer window, with Werner one of the most coveted players on the market.
The German has scored 27 goals in 36 games for Leipzig this season, also providing 12 assists in his new deeper role, with only five players netting more times across Europe’s top 15 leagues.
Speaking to Sky Germany, Mintzlaff suggested Werner could extend his stay with Leipzig, stressing that he has another three years on his contract.
“I’m deeply relaxed about Werner, he hasn’t signalled yet that he wants to leave at the end of the season,” he insisted.
“And he doesn’t have to. He has a contract until 2023.”
Mintzlaff added that despite the current situation, Leipzig will not depart with players for fees “significantly below value.”
However, there is likely to be little option if a club makes a reasonable offer for Werner, with it widely reported that he has release clause worth around £50.5 million in his contract with the Bundesliga club.
It would be wrong to consider the prospect of spending such a fee amid the coronavirus pandemic—and Liverpool have reportedly stalled all talks at this stage—but in a normal scenario this would be a ‘bargain’ fee for a player of Werner’s calibre.
If the club were to trigger this clause it would take the matter out of Leipzig’s hands, leaving the decision down to Werner himself as to whether he stays or goes.
His complimentary words on Liverpool in recent months would indicate that he is open to joining Jurgen Klopp‘s side, and he seems to have accepted the challenge of fighting for his place at Anfield.
And there would likely be a place for the Germany international in Klopp’s squad, particularly with Xherdan Shaqiri expected to depart at the end of the campaign.
It is all up in the air at this stage, but Mintzlaff’s comments are possibly more hopeful than they are confident.