Liverpool have been heavily linked with RB Leipzig’s Timo Werner
RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner set the rumour mill abuzz last month when he hinted at a potential transfer to Liverpool next summer. (h/t Express)
Ever since, there have been plenty of speculations surrounding the German’s possible move to Anfield. Latest reports have claimed that the Reds are in pole position to sign Werner in the summer, avoiding competition from fellow Premier League outfit Chelsea (h/t Express)
Werner has been in excellent form this season, banging in 27 goals and assisting 12 more in 36 matches across all competitions. Given the form that he has been in, the 23-year-old would potentially be an excellent addition to our squad.
But, how would Liverpool line up with Werner in tow? Where can Klopp make room for the German in an already star-studded line-up?
Timo Werner in; Roberto Firmino out?
The first and most obvious option would be for Klopp to use Werner in his preferred centre-forward role, in rotation with incumbent Roberto Firmino. The Brazilian hasn’t been firing on all cylinders this season, but is an integral member of our side. But someone like Werner would bring an alternate dimension to the attacking line-up, boosting our arsenal further.
The rest of the line-up remains pretty much the same from our current season with Alisson Becker lining up in goal. The Brazilian will be shielded by a backline of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk and Andrew Robertson.
Fabinho will continue to slot in as the No. 6 for Liverpool, with captain Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum providing the forward thrust from the remaining two midfield slots. Werner could spearhead our attack, flanked by the deadly duo of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane in such a scenario.
Possible Liverpool XI (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Werner, Mane
Timo Werner on the flanks?
Another possible way Klopp would be able to use Werner is on the wings. Liverpool have lacked a quality backup for both Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah, which hasn’t allowed Klopp to rotate and rest his premier attackers enough. And the potential acquisition of Werner would allow some respite, with the German international more than capable of playing on the flanks.
Werner’s pace and close control, and his ability to cut in from the wings to devastating effect would mean Liverpool wouldn’t lose the threat they pose with Mane and Salah on the field. The rest of the team remains very much intact, with Firmino returning to play through the middle.
Possible Liverpool XI (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Werner
A switch to 4-2-3-1 with Timo Werner as No.9
If Klopp doesn’t want to bench any of his attacking options, a switch to the 4-2-3-1 setup would be the answer for the German and Liverpool. Klopp has, at times, used this formation, with Divock Origi in the side. But with someone as lethal as Werner in the line-up, such a setup could work wonders for Liverpool.
The back-five would remain untouched, but one central midfielder, most likely Wijnaldum, would have to drop out. Fabinho would stay put and break up the play while Jordan Henderson can partner him in the double pivot and look to act as the conduit between the two halves of the pitch with his distribution.
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A switch to 4-2-3-1 would mean Roberto Firmino dropping into the hole behind the striker. The Brazilian is used to playing in such a position and has shown he can be mighty effective in that role. Mo Salah and Sadio Mane continue out wide with Timo Werner lining up as the lone striker, playing on the shoulders of the opposition defenders.
Possible Liverpool XI (4-2-3-1): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho; Salah, Firmino, Mane; Werner