10 biggest transfer flops as Timo Werner compared to Fernando Torres

Timo Werner has once again found himself buried beneath an avalanche of criticism after a very blunt Chelsea side drew 1-1 against Manchester United.

In recent seasons, a draw with the Red Devils would have been considered a good result, however, Thomas Tuchel’s side would have handed United another trouncing if their finishing was up to scratch.

And former Chelsea forward Tony Cascarino scathed into the German by comparing him with the Blues’ former record signing Fernando Torres.

“Chelsea should have put United away but they have a problem in Timo Werner, whose touch just isn’t top level, and whose finishing is worse,” Cascarino said in his column for The Times.

“I say below that I think managers should stick by strikers but the truth is that it is less likely to happen at the big clubs like Chelsea.

“Once they have decided Werner isn’t good enough, they have the money to buy a replacement. I wonder if they will soon get to that point with him.”

And on the topic of expensive toothless finishers, Daily Star Sport considers the Premier League’s biggest transfer flops.

Fernando Torres

We begin with the very man Werner has regularly been compared with during his struggles at Stamford Bridge.

Torres was the most feared striker in world football having smashed home 65 goals in 102 appearances for Liverpool.

However, in pursuit of trophies, the Spanish World Cup winner made himself very unpopular on Merseyside, by moving to title rivals Chelsea for a then world record £50n, on January transfer deadline day.

It took the former Atletico Madrid man 14 matches to score his first Chelsea goal, but Torres’ lack of confidence could not have been more prominent.

He only managed to score 20 Premier League goals in 110 matches for the West Londoners, during an at times demoralising spell at Stamford Bridge.

Kepa Arrizabalaga

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Kepa Arrizabalaga’s monumental £72m move from Athletic Bilbao at the beginning of Maurizio Sarri’s solitary season at Stamford Bridge is one of the most bizarre signings in Premier League history.

Despite becoming the most expensive goalkeeper in world football, a record which he still holds today, Kepa began his Chelsea career well with a series of fine performances.

But a lapse in communication between Kepa and Sarri in the League Cup Final resulted in the 27-year-old refusing to be substituted, to the fury and embarrassment of the now Lazio manager.

While he finished that season strongly, Kepa hit a new low under Frank Lampard when he briefly held the unfortunate title of worst save percentage in Europe.

Lampard signed Edouard Mendy for a fraction of Kepa’s price, and the Spaniard has warmed the Stamford Bridge bench since.


Very few players at Manchester United are as derided as the Brazilian midfielder.

His £47m arrival from Shakhtar Donetsk was supposed to be the key to unleashing Paul Pogba and strengthening a flimsy United midfield.

However, neither has been accomplished since his arrival, and while he is a first team started for United, most Reds fans feel he should be nowhere near the team.

While he performed admirably in United’s draw with Chelsea, he was horribly bullied in the Red Devils’ horrific 5-0 and 2-0 home defeats to Liverpool and Manchester City respectively.

Tanguy Ndombele

Tanguy Ndombele was one of Mauricio Pochettino’s final signings at Tottenham Hotspur.

Unfortunately, ‘the best til last’ cliché certainly does not apply to the Frenchman, who arrived into North London from Lyon with a £54m price tag and an enormous reputation.

While there have been some flashes of brilliance from the 24-year-old over the last few seasons, he has failed to impress under Pochettino, Mourinho, Nuno Espirito-Santo and now Antonio Conte.

His performance in Spurs’ humiliating 2-1 away defeat to Slovenian minnows NS Mura was greeted with fury.

Only time will tell if he has a final chance for redemption under Conte, but the current signs have not looked good.

Juan Sebastian Veron

The only part of Juan Sebastian Veron’s time at Manchester United which sticks in the memory is Sir Alex Ferguson’s memorable, expletive filled defence of the Argentinean.

At the time, his £28.1m arrival from Lazio in 2001 was the most expensive transfer in Premier League history, but he failed to make any sort of impact at Old Trafford.

But his presence on the red half of Manchester did leave one lasting memory which is still talked about today – Ferguson’s legendary rant about journalists criticising him.

When asked about his shoddy performances, Ferguson fumed at the reporters. Shouting “On you go. I’m not f****** talking to you. He’s a f****** great player. You are f****** idiots”.

Nicolas Pepe

Nicolas Pepe’s £72m eyebrow raising move to Arsenal came somewhat out of left-field.

The Ivory Coast winger is now into his third season at the Emirates Stadium, and many of those eyebrows are still planted at the top of people’s foreheads.

Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith-Rowe have since benched the dynamic winger who has only played five Premier League minutes in the Gunners’ last five matches.

To make matter worse, Unai Emery, the manager who signed him for the Gunners, even said to the Guardian he wanted to sign Wilfried Zaha and not the former Lille man.

Ironically, Pepe could very well be playing with Zaha in the near future, as he has been linked with a move to Crystal Palace in recent weeks.

Angel Di Maria

Excitement had never been so high when United secured the illustrious signature of Angel Di Maria.

The Red Devils forker out £57.7m for the Argentine star who came into Premier League off the back of a man of the match display in the Champions League final.

Aside from a magnificent scooped finish against Leicester City, Di Maria did not seem to be a good fit in Louis van Gaal’s rigid 3-4-1-2 system.

After a strong start where he contributed three goals and four assists in his first six appearances, he did not find the net in his next 22 matches, as he and his family failed to settle in Manchester.

He was sold to Paris Saint-Germain for £44.3m the following season – the dynamic winger is also extremely bitter towards Manchester United.

Alvaro Morata

Former Chelsea manager Antonio Conte took a huge risk by jettisoning Diego Costa from the Blues’ starting eleven and signing Alvaro Morata for £60m.

At first, it appeared to be a magnificent investment, as the Spaniard fired home six goals and two assists in his first five Premier League appaerances.

However, his shooting boots departed him after September, as the former Real Madrid star only scored five goals in his next twenty-five appearances for the west Londoners.

His confidence and reputation dissipated with every horrific miss for the Blues, who slowly phased him out of the starting eleven.

His scoring touch also departed him under Sarri, as he only scored five goals in sixteen League appearances.

Sebastien Haller

West Ham paid Eintracht Frankfurt a hefty £45m to sign the imposing Sebastian Haller in the 2019-20 season.

The Ivory Coast international formed a deadly partnership with Luka Jovic with the Bundesliga giants, and contributed 20 goals and 14 assists, as Frankfurt reached the semi-finals of the Europa League.

However, neither Manuel Pellegrini or David Moyes were able to get a tune out of him, and the 27-year-old was sold to Ajax. After a measly run of ten goals and two assists in forty-eight Premier League appearances.

But the Hammers may well be cursing that decision, as he had been on fire this season, scoring nine goals in six Champions League appearances, and nine goals in 13 Eredivisie games for Erik Ten Hag’s

West Ham ten goals and two assists in forty-eight Premier League appearances.


Robinho’s Premier League venture is solely remembered for being one of the most historic landmark signings in the division’s history.

After Manchester City were taken over by the Abu Dhabi group, the silky Brazilian was their first landmark signing of their era.

At first, the Samba Star appeared to be moving to Stamford Bridge, but the Citizens trumped the West Londoners with a then record £32.5m bid.

His debut season at the Etihad Stadium was very impressive, as the former Real Madrid and AC Milan star scored 14 goals in 31 appearances.

However, he failed to find the net in any of his ten games the following campaign, and he was sold to AC Milan for less than half of his transfer fee.

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