Kai Havertz

Kai Havertz’s first four months at Chelsea have not gone according to plan, to say the least, however unsurprising.

The 21-year-old arrived for the biggest transfer fee of all of Chelsea’s six first-team signings. As his standing as one of Europe’s brightest young talents afforded him a record deal amongst the Blues’ £220million summer splurge. 

He has been unable to string the flashes of brilliance into consistency and eventually struggled for form and fitness in recent weeks; after being hit hard by symptoms of Covid-19. Havertz was duly relegated to the bench with Frank Lampard managing his minutes.

He is indeed gradually playing his way into form after coming off the bench to assist the consolation goal against City, then given a confidence boost in the FA Cup third round victory against Morecambe. 

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Flicker of confidence 

The 90minutes were a chance Havertz took alongside fellow struggling German Timo Werner; as he set up his compatriot for a tap-in with a cushioned header, before rising impressively to meet Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross to complete the 4-0 scoreline.

There was palpable relief on Havertz’s face as he had worked hard in the all-attacking Chelsea display.

It was only against League Two opponents but the confidence taken from breaking his goal drought would have a rippling effect on his performances. 

Head Work

The common theme with his goal contributions was that they both came from headers. Standing at 6ft 2, Havertz’s heading is one of the many qualities which laud him as a complete footballer.

Kai Havertz and Timo Werner
Kai Havertz set it on a plate for his mate’s first goal in 13 games. (Getty Images)

He scored the seventh headed goal of his short career and a delve into his heading statistics perhaps bears optimism. Havertz won 1.4 aerial duels per game in the Bundesliga last season and is averaging 1.2 for Chelsea. The German’s overall heading accuracy has dropped to 38.7% from 41% in his final season at Leverkusen; Hence, the 21-year-old must practice more heading in training. 

It could well be the flicker of confidence that might kick start his Chelsea career. 

Chelsea have put an emphasis on crossing in recent weeks, especially with Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ziyech back in form that would only increase in coming games. 

If Werner would remain the central striker for the coming weeks – where he does love to drift outside the box – Havertz’s spatial awareness and natural urge to arrive in intelligent spaces in the box could prove a vital weapon. 

With Chelsea’s most-potent crosser, Reece James, also back in training for Fulham on Saturday. It may signal the start of Havertz hitting the ground running in a Chelsea shirt. 

It goes without saying, he usually improves in the second half of the season in his career to date.

Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin
January 14, 2021
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Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin

Chief Editor of the Football Castle, Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin is a football junkie and writer of the beautiful game.


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