With the World Cup just about 15 months away, Germany head coach, Joachim Löw, must now be drafting his team as they plan to defend their world title. With the retirements of Bastian Schweinsteiger and Philipp Lahm, Löw has lost his leaders, but there has been a huge void in the German ranks for perhaps the last four to six years. Due to the aging of Miroslav Klose combined with the dramatic decline of Mario Gomez, Die Mannschaft hasn’t been able to produce another top class striker. Despite World Cup glory in 2014, the Germans are still lacking quality and cutting edge in the final third. However, Löw and his coaching staff may have discovered the missing piece of the puzzle in RB Leipzig starlet, Timo Werner.

Since moving to the Red Bull Arena from Stuttgart last summer, the 21-year-old has been a revelation, helping Leipzig mount a serious title challenge until recently. The Stuttgart graduate is one of the most exciting prospects in the Bundesliga, displaying attributes that could eventually make him one of the best strikers in the game. His form has been rewarded with an invitation to the national team and with his qualities, could very well become a regular fixture upfront for the world champions. With Marco Reus struggling with injuries, Mario Götze out indefinitely due to a metabolic problem and Thomas Müller struggling for form, there is a huge opportunity for the Leipzig striker to stake his claim in Löw’s plans.

Background

Born March 6, 1996 in Stuttgart, Werner joined VfB Stuttgart at the tender age of six years old. A diminutive figure and lacking the physical attributes of others, the Leipzig striker used his pace and ability on the ball to win over youth coaches. He moved through the ranks quite quickly and with some impressive performances, he was promoted to the U17 team at the age of 15 years.

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STUTTGART, GERMANY – NOVEMBER 01: Timo Werner of VfB Stuttgart scores a goal during the Bundesliga match between VfB Stuttgart and SV Darmstadt at Mercedes-Benz Arena on November 1, 2015 in Stuttgart, Germany. (Photo by Adam Pretty/Bongarts/Getty Images)

After about a year with the U17 set-up, the fast-rising teen was promoted to the U19 roster and moved into the first team a year later. At 17 years old, Werner made his senior debut for Stuttgart in August 2013 in the Europa League. In November of the same year, he scored a brace, making him the youngest player in Bundesliga history to score two goals in a match.