Crystal Palace, West Ham and Fulham join race for Chelsea flop who is 'available' for transfer in January

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Fulham, West Ham and Crystal Palace could all make a move for a 57-time German international.

A former Premier League striker could make a return to the English capital just 18 months after his departure from Chelsea. Timo Werner arrived at Chelsea in the summer of 2020, making him the second signing of the Frank Lampard era after the club’s transfer embargo was lifted.

The German international arrived in England with huge expectations after four excellent seasons with RB Leipzig and many felt he would become one of the top strikers in the division.

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The £45m man struggled to adapt to English football in his first season and scored just six league goals in 35 appearances. Despite these low numbers, Werner was credited for his all round creativity with eight league assists, while he also helped fire the club to Champions League glory with four European goals in 12 appearances, including a crucial goal in the semi-final against Real Madrid.

Werner was given a second season to prove his worth at Stamford Bridge by manager Thomas Tuchel, but ultimately failed to improve on his low goal tally with just four goals in 21 appearances. This prompted RB Leipzig to re-sign their former talisman for a cut price fee of £25m. However, after an initial strong start to life back in Germany, Werner has failed to match the high standards of his first stint at the club scoring a combined 11 goals in 35 league appearances.

Werner was a member of the team which won the DFB Pokal last term, but he has only has managed a total of 203 minutes of football across eight league appearances so far this year, struggling to stand out in a Leipzig forward line which recruited Benjamin Sesko, Lois Openda and loanee Xavi Simons this summer.

Leipzig sporting director Rouven Schroder recently hinted that the club are open to parting ways with Werner, saying: "Timo Werner is a part of a team that has to face competition. He's going through a difficult phase, we support him. It's not always all sunshine and roses."

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Schroder added: "We will have players who have something else in mind. We will face that. Quite openly, very clearly. If someone has the idea that they want to do something different, then we will deal with it."

90min reports that three London clubs are closely monitoring the situation with Werner. Fulham and Crystal Palace are in the market for a loan deal while, West Ham, boosted by the funds of the Declan Rice deal, could even opt to buy the player on a permanent basis to boost their European hopes.

Fulham have been searching for a striker to replace the output of Alexander Mitrovic, who made the move to Saudi Arabia in the summer. The Cottagers are 15th in the table and their achilles heel has often been scoring goals this term.

Crystal Palace are another club in need of a goalscorer, they have been steady in the league in 13th place, but are missing the output of a player like Wilfried Zaha. West Ham have Michail Antonio and Danny Ings at their disposal, but have been heavily reliant on winger Jarrod Bowen to score goals in recent seasons.

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A January move may also interest Werner, who failed to make Germany’s most recent squad for friendlies against Turkey and Austria. The striker boasts a record of 24 goals in 57 international appearances but is still waiting for his first goal in a major tournament. 

The 27-year-old will have ambitions of improving on that record in Euro 2024 on home soil and will hope for regular football so he can secure his place in Julian Nagelsmann’s final squad.

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