The former Ajax and Tottenham Hotspur midfielder was quick to defend his fellow Dutchman after a fellow pundit had compared struggling Chelsea star Werner to Van Persie
Ex- Tottenham Hotspur star Rafael Van de Vaart threatened to “walk away” after another pundit had compared Chelsea ‘s much-maligned Timo Werner to former Arsenal and Manchester United great Robin van Persie.
On the night, Werner was in fine form – notching his first goal with just 83 seconds on the clock, making Zenit pay for their slow start.
Bizarrely, Chelsea’s early strike seemed to trigger a drop in standards as Tuchel’s men appeared to rest on their laurels.
They found themselves 2-1 down at the half time interval, before goal-scorer turned provider in the 62nd minute as Werner teed up Romelu Lukaku for the Belgian’s first goal since his return from injury.
Werner scored his second of the night in the 85th minute, probably thinking he had bagged the winner, only for Zenit to equalise again in second half stoppage time.
The German’s second, Chelsea’s third, displayed some penalty box composure to wriggle away from opposition defenders before lashing his effort home.
The strike had a hint of Van Persie about it according to the coverage from Dutch outlet Ziggo Sport, though not everyone in the studio was in agreement.
In response to the claims, pundit Van der Vaart quipped: “If you compare Werner with Van Persie one more time, I will walk away now.”
Van Persie established himself as somewhat of a Premier League icon throughout his career, despite winning the title just once his countless goals for both Arsenal and United made him one of the most lethal marksman in the league.
Former Real Madrid midfielder Van der Vaart has rarely held back during his time as a television pundit, with everyone from United skipper Harry Maguire to seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi in his firing line.
And despite his fine performance in Russia, Werner has struggled for form yet again so far this season in the league – with just one league goal to his name in eight appearances.
The ex- RB Leipzig forward has found his game time drastically reduced in comparison to last term as a result of the arrival of £98m man Lukaku, who has also endured a drought since his return to Stamford Bridge.