Timo Werner “needs to brush up on his finishing”, according to Joe Cole, who thinks Frank Lampard should drop the struggling Chelsea forward.
Chelsea snapped Werner up on a five-year contract in June after sealing a £47.5 million ($64m) deal with RB Leipzig, reportedly beating the likes of Liverpool, Bayern Munich, and Real Madrid to his signature.
The 24-year-old established himself as one of the most prolific goalscorers in Europe at Red Bull Arena but has not been quite as effective in the final third during his first few months at Stamford Bridge.
The Germany international has only eight goals to his name from 20 appearances in all competitions for the Blues this season and hasn’t found the back of the net in any of his last eight outings.
Werner drew another blank as Chelsea suffered a second successive defeat at the hands of Wolves on Tuesday night, with Lampard still seemingly unsure how best to utilize his talents.
The ex-Leipzig star started the game on the right before being shifted to the left in the second half but was ultimately unable to affect the game on either flank, and Cole thinks he is badly in need of a rest after a frustrating start to his career in west London.
“I think Werner when he comes in off that left, he’s very, very dangerous,” the former Blues winger told Amazon Prime Video after his old club’s 2-0 loss at Molineux.
“I just think he just needs to brush up on his finishing, but he’s a young striker and he will do that. I’ve got no doubts he’ll be a top player for Chelsea but there are options now and he [Lampard] needs to move it around.
“[Hakim] Ziyech and [Callum] Hudson-Odoi to come back in, freshen it up at some point. Take Werner out, bring him back in.
“It’s a marathon to win a title usually, and certainly this year. You’ve got to use your whole squad.
“So Werner maybe come out, bring the other lads back in.”
Cole is still confident that Werner will come good at Chelsea, and he’s offered the same assessment of the frontman’s fellow countryman Kai Havertz, who has also failed to live up to expectations since his £70 million ($94m) switch to the Bridge from Bayer Leverkusen in the summer transfer window.
“I think he’s [Werner’s] had a good start to his Chelsea career,” he added.
“You can compare him with other big foreign imports, sometimes they come to this league [and] you have to understand it might take time for them to settle.
“I think for him and Havertz it has as well. Werner has probably settled in a little bit quicker. They are two top players, I know because you see the glimpses.
“But I have no doubt Werner and Havertz will be massive players for Chelsea.”