Touted as a future Germany international, the newly promoted Bundesliga side had built their forward line around a player with just 13 goals to his name across three seasons.
By comparison, the above shot map from last season shows his efforts close to the goal were considered to be more difficult. This is perhaps because under Ralf Rangnick, RB Leipzig played a counter-attacking style. At times, Werner would be isolated and he’d be forced into taking trickier shots. Now though, Nagelsmann deploys a high press which sees RB’s No.11 better supported by his team-mates. He’s the man tasked with adding the finishing touch to team moves and these simple tap-ins are rehearsed moves straight off the training pitch.
Werner has added a ruthless streak to his game and is now more important to RB Leipzig than ever before. But while other strikers drop deep to get more involved, the Germany international has simply been unshackled in the offensive third. This increase in output highlights how players can be a lot more potent without needing more of the ball.
In football, timing is everything. Time in possession, the timing of the pass and the timing of the run. Nagelsmann realised the quicker Werner played, the more effective he could be for RB Leipzig, and it’s paying off.
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