Timo Werner insists Chelsea closing in on a top-four Premier League finish and reaching the Champions League final has helped him cope with his “unluckiest season”.
Germany striker Werner has mustered just four goals in 42 matches for club and country, and endured another frustrating night as the Blues edged Leicester 2-1 on Tuesday evening.
Werner had two goals disallowed – one for offside and another that was initially awarded by goal-line technology, only to be ruled out by a Video Assistant Referee check.
The 25-year-old was also denied a penalty in the first half, though later earned the crucial spot-kick that allowed Jorginho to net the winner as Chelsea gained revenge for Saturday’s 1-0 FA Cup final defeat by the Foxes.
Werner admitted Tuesday’s first half summed up the most frustrating campaign of his career, but quickly moved on to accentuate the positives.
“The first half was a bit like a mirror of the whole season for me,” he said.
“Until now I was always close, then at the end not really close. It may be the unluckiest season I have had and will have.
“For the handball, I went to make a header, got a little push, put my arm out and then headed it exactly against my arm. Either you don’t give a handball because of the foul, or you give a penalty as well.
“But when you have a season like this and you still reach the Champions League final, and maybe reach the Champions League next year, everything is good!”
Chelsea fans were back at Stamford Bridge for the first time this season as coronavirus restrictions ease, with 8,000 supporters on hand to watch the Leicester win.
The Blues faithful made a concerted effort to throw their support behind Werner with a regular refrain of chants for the pacy forward.
And the former RB Leipzig star moved to thank the fans for their clear backing.
“It was really hard after the final, but this game was so big that we couldn’t have so many things in our head about the final because we had to concentrate on this game,” Werner told Chelsea’s website.
“It was difficult. We had to prepare very good for this game, and find solutions. They didn’t give us that in the FA Cup, but with our power and our energy, and the crowd behind us, we did very well.
“We are very happy about this win, and we have the feeling we can go to Aston Villa and win, but the job is not done.
“We have missed the fans so much. That’s why you play football, because you want a full stadium. There were only 8,000 but it was so loud. It made it a lot of fun to play and you saw that on the pitch.
“When I turned in the middle and ran and gave the pass to Chilly (Ben Chilwell), and then we had a big chance after two or three minutes, the crowd was there. They were pushing us so much and that is what we have missed.
“It was really nice to hear the fans like me and cheer me and push me.
“In Germany you don’t have songs for one guy. In Germany it was the opposite – I was hated a lot! But here the whole crowd was very good.
“You could see how important supporters can be when they’re in the stadium and not in front of their TVs.”
Leicester defender Ricardo Pereira insisted the Foxes will not be derailed in defeat, however, with Sunday’s season-closing clash with Tottenham proving pivotal for Champions League qualification.
“We’ll do the same as we did after the FA Cup final,” Pereira told his club’s website.
“We had a day to celebrate with the team, with our families.
“But the next day the thoughts were on the next game, and that’s what we’ll do again.”