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Liverpool-linked Werner sees door opened to possible summer sale

08:39 GMT 03/01/2019
Timo Werner RB Leipzig 2018
The CEO of Bundesliga side RB Leipzig has issued the striker with an ultimatum: sign a new contract or leave before the start of next season

RB Leipzig's CEO Oliver Mintzlaff has warned Timo Werner that he will be sold if he declines to sign a contract extension before the end of the current campaign.

Werner has emerged as the club's most prized asset in recent years and he is enjoying his most prolific season yet , having hit 11 goals in 17 Bundesliga matches.

His goals have helped to propel Leipzig into the top four, with realistic hopes of returning to the Champions League next season.

Werner already has 23 caps for Germany under his belt and he has been widely tipped for a bright future at both international and club level.

The 22-year-old's current deal at Leipzig is set to expire in 2020, at which point he will become available on a free transfer.

Speculation linking Werner with a move away from the club has been swirling in recent months and Mintzlaff has revealed that he is trying to tie him down to a new deal.

The Leipzig chief has urged Werner to make up his mind quickly, or risk being sold to the highest bidder before the start of next season.

"Of course we have to know at the latest after the end of the season,"  Mintzlaff told German publication Kicker . "A club like us cannot afford to go with Timo Werner in a final contract year.

"It's logical that such a player should be courted by clubs that have a very different sporting perspective and different financial possibilities than we have.

"But as long as we develop as a club, and of course the Champions League participation would be very helpful, I believe that Werner is still in good hands with us.

"If Timo does not strive for the highest possible salary, then it would be a good investment in his sporting future."

Bayern Munich has been mooted as Werner's most likely next destination, with the Leipzig talisman admitting last month that they are the only Bundesliga side he would consider leaving for .

Liverpool have also been mentioned as a possible landing spot, while Manchester United have been credited with holding an interest in the past.

The January transfer window is now open and Leipzig are free to listen to offers for Werner from potential suitors, but it remains to be seen whether or not the club will allow him to depart midway through the 2018-19 campaign.

Leipzig are back in action after the winter break on January 19, as they host Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund and Werner will be expected to lead the line once again.