By Oliver Trust
BERLIN, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- Timo Werner is what one might call a football youngster. Aged only 22, there is little that seems to perturb him. After the RB Leipzig striker's many ups and downs, he finally appears to have found the recipe for success.
"I've learnt to focus fully on myself and accept the realities of professional football," Werner commented. "Talent might get you to professional football, but from there on it is hard work and guts that enables you to reach the top and then stay there."
It is no surprise that the young man - still regarded by many as a wunderkind - stands for an ambitious future at both his club and in the German national team.
Having equaled an over 42-year-old Bundesliga record when scoring a brace against Borussia Moenchengladbach (2-0) he has now added a new chapter to his career. Werner is the first person since 1976 to score two goals in 11 games by the age of 22. It was the fourth time this season that he has found the back of the net twice in the same game.
For Werner, it hasn't always been a pleasure to set new records.
"You have handled the emotions around you. Winning a game makes you a hero, after losing you are blamed for everything," Werner emphasizes. "You have to learn to forget about statistics and only rely on honest advice," Werner said, adding that it is a challenge for every young footballer.
He became the youngest ever Bundesliga professional to break the 100 games barrier and the youngest player to make his first team debut at his hometown when only 17. In 2017, he won the Golden Boot at the age of 21 when winning the Confed Cup with Germany. In 2013, he was RB Leipzig's first-ever player to be capped for the national team. In the 2018/2019, he is the striker with the most shots (53) after the 13th round of matches (eight goals/two assists).
Top European clubs like Real Madrid, Manchester United and FC Barcelona are said to be keeping an eye on Werner.
German national coach Joachim Loew called him a player that can decide games. For fans, Werner meanwhile is the face standing for the future of the national team alongside youngsters like Leroy Sane (Manchester City) and Serge Gnabry (Bayern Munich).
"Looking back, I must admit I rarely get nervous. It doesn't happen because of a game and a crowd of 60,000, it only happens when the national anthem is played," Werner commented adding he had to learn to ignore comments and statements from outsiders.
Many, he insists, mistakenly compare ambitiousness with arrogance. "Meanwhile I have gained enough self-confidence to put things into perspective," the forward commented.
A footballer doesn't improve because he is praised by anyone he says. "What's vital is what you do in the pitch," he added.
But why not speak about ambitious goals, Werner says? After Leipzig beat Moenchengladbach, Werner spoke about winning the German title. "If we continue to play like that everything is possible," he stated adding he doesn't feel like the young, inexperienced talent anymore.
"It might sound unusual, but I think I am one of the leaders in our team. Many of my teammates keep an eye on what I do, they try to find out what I will do next. Again, it's got nothing to do with arrogance, it is part of the football, a team sport. You need to be confident," Werner said.
Werner apparently has found his balance, and it is far from a bold promise that he is ready to win more titles.