The Champions League may be the toughest competition in the world to win according to Timo Werner, but our forward is confident Chelsea can go all the way this season, and his hunger to do so is further fuelled by his past European experiences.
The Blues meet Real Madrid in the first leg of the semi-final in Spain tomorrow, before the sides reconvene at Stamford Bridge a week on Wednesday to determine who will make it to the Istanbul showpiece.
Werner, who has nine Champions League appearances, three goals and two assists to his name since joining Chelsea, is determined to make up for lost time in the competition.
‘We all want to reach the Champions League final and to win it in the end is the dream of every kid,’ he said.
‘Last year I dropped out in the quarter-final because of the move [to Chelsea] and because of coronavirus I couldn’t play for Leipzig. I had a lot of criticism for that in Germany because it is not always you are in the quarter-final or semi-final of the Champions League.
‘Now I reach it again, one year later, with my new club. That’s a good thing for me to show everybody I can do it, not only with one team but with two teams, two years in a row. It makes me proud and more hungry to make it this year to the final. And maybe to win the Champions League at the end.’
If that dream is to be realised we must first overcome the most successful team in the history of the European Cup, Real Madrid, in our maiden meeting with the Spanish giants in this tournament.
‘We have to face a very strong opponent on Tuesday and one week later at Stamford Bridge,’ recognises Werner.
‘It will be a very tight game. We want to keep pushing for two games and give everything we have. It’s very difficult over the weeks because we have to keep also an eye on the Premier League because we have big games against big teams in the Premier League.
‘It is not boring! The season has a lot of life. We will keep pushing and on Tuesday we will look to win the game as we did in Porto and Atletico and at West Ham.’
It has been a season of ups and downs for Chelsea and Werner, yet like so many of our past campaigns we are reaching its conclusion with the genuine possibility of silverware. It will all have been worth it for Werner if he can pick up the first winners’ medals of his club career.
‘The Champions League is the most difficult cup in the world to win. When you have the chance you have to go for it.
‘Also, the FA Cup we have a big, big chance to win it. If somebody told us at the beginning of the season we would have a very big chance to be in both competitions, in the semi-final and the final they would say never, never, never.
‘But now we are there. And we have a good team. We have a team who can fight for both titles. We are not here because we are lucky. We are here because we work hard and that’s the most important thing. That’s why we go with confidence to win these games.’