German national football team forwards Leroy Sane (left) and Timo Werner take part in a training session at the Rungghof training center on May 24, 2018 in Girlan, near Bolzano, northern Italy. (MIGUEL MEDINA / AFP)
BERLIN - Football seems to create its heroes quicker than any other business field. At the same time, the wonderboy status is only borrowed and can disappear as quickly as it was awarded. 23-year-old Timo Werner used to be one of the branches most gifted faces as he made his debut as a professional at the age of 17 and meanwhile has played 24 internationals for Germany only a few years later.
Now the striker's career seems to be stalling.
Werner is entirely depending on Sane's decision to either stay with Spanish star coach Pep Guardiola in the Premier League or confirm his Bayern move
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In advance of Germany's 2020 Euro Qualifier against Estonia, this Tuesday evening in Mainz Werner not only lost his place in the starting eleven of the national team but plans to join Bayern Munich this summer are endangered.
Bayern's focus has turned from Werner as the Bavarians main target to Leroy Sane.
In the national team Serge Gnabry, Marco Reus and Sane have surpassed Werner who wasn't given any playing minutes in the recent games against the Netherlands (3-2) and Belarus (2-0).
The 23-year-old striker of Manchester City has developed from the national team's biggest problem child into the team's most significant promise. Insiders say, if 2019 German Champion Bayern can realize the deal with the 23-year-old Citizens winger, Werner has to be patient and wait at least another year.
To carry the load of two expensive transfers (Sane/over 100 million euro) and Werner (65 million/both plus the salary coming with long-lasting contracts) is said to be a too heavy burden for the 2013 treble winner.
Werner is entirely depending on Sane's decision to either stay with Spanish star coach Pep Guardiola in the Premier League or confirm his Bayern move.
Werner's contract with Leipzig expires in 2020 and meanwhile it isn't excluded anymore that the forward stays with the East-German club for the next season. Initially, the side had announced to either sell Werner or extend his contract but excluded the possibility of a last year without any further agreement.
Germany's Leroy Sane is pictured during a training session at De Koel stadium in Venlo on June 4, 2019, before the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying football match against Belarus. (INA FASSBENDER / AFP)
Now Leipzig CEO Oliver Mintzlaff said the club is going to count on Werner's support when facing the 2019/2020 Champions League campaign next to the national league and the German Cup. Leipzig's new coach Julian Nagelsmann underlined he would be happy to have Werner around.
That, of course, could create a difficult situation for both Leipzig and Werner. RB wouldn't gain a transfer fee, and Werner would have to live with assumedly negative reactions of the club's fans who could blame Werner for any kind of failure.
It might be a wonderboy's destiny to be under critical surveillance much more than others. Recent reports spoke about Werner as a falling star while Sane was praised as the countries new hope.
Others say Werner's career has come to a halt due to an unfortunate strategy. Some assume Sane having turned up on the transfer market is just bad luck for Werner.
Leipzig's German forward Timo Werner celebrates after the German Cup (DFB Pokal) semi-final football match Hamburg SV v RB Leipzig in Hamburg, northern Germany on April 23, 2019. (PATRIK STOLLARZ / AFP)
The trend is clearly speaking for Sane, who has won six titles since he left his former club FC Schalke 04 in 2016. Werner's achievement lies in having promoted to the Bundesliga with RB and the qualification for the Champions League.
It currently seems only a side effect that Werner can count on a far better goal record (0.53 goals per league game/0,38 in the national team) than Sane (0.25 in the national team).
German national coach assistant Marcus Sorg in advance of the Estonia game spoke about Werner being treated unfairly "as he hasn't failed and is still a vital part of our team."
Sorg underlined that "we all can be happy to have him around. He will be of great value for us in the near future." It looks like Werner is well advised to prove just that shortly.
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