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Kai Havertz and his Chelsea’s debut: a mixed reaction

Kai Havertz played his first competitive football match for Chelsea on Monday and many fans of the club were not too excited about his performance as he failed to meet up with expectations.

The 21-year-old German attacking midfielder who joined the club in August from Bayer Leverkusen for a transfer fee worth at least 80 million euros was expected to be an instant hero at the club based on his antecedent and the amount of money the club paid to acquire his services.

Before he left German Bundesliga to play in the Premier League, he was one of the brightest lights in Germany. In the 2019-2020 season, the attacking midfielder scored 18 goals and provided 9 assists for Leverkusen which made him one of the hottest youngsters in the transfer market.

Though the Premier League is believed to be tougher than the Bundesliga, Kai Havertz who is Chelsea’s record signing was expected to do better in Chelsea than in Leverkusen due to the better caliber of footballers he has the opportunity to play with at Stamford Bridge.

However, the reverse was the case on Monday when his coach Frank Lampard decided to start him ahead of Callum Hudson-Odoi and other regulars he met at the club. Kai Havertz played for 80 minutes of the match but failed to stamp his authority which forced Lampard to bring in Hudson-Odoi to replace him.

The German international played so woefully that he could not participate in the three goals the club scored. In fact, he didn’t make any assist or played any shot on target throughout his time on the pitch.

To make matter worse for him, he decided to drive himself on the pitch with the ball as stylishly as he could and ended up making a cross-filed pass to the linesman on the far left.

Though such a mistake has attracted a lot of criticism from the fans and non-fans of the club, Chelsea’s manager, Frank Lampard believes that Kai Havertz showed signs of how brilliant he could be for the club. He praised the German international for being able to track back in order to win back the ball when he lost it.

“It’s a big ask (to settle in immediately) there’s a lot on his shoulders for the singing that he was he’s young and coming into a new league”, Frank Lampard said after the Brighton’s match.

“He plays the game at such quality and the way in which he receives the ball. We saw a few glimpses of that. We saw him sprint back 80 yards to make a tackle after giving the ball away. Everything I’ve seen in terms of his character is spot on.

“His quality will come through. It’s asking a lot for him tonight but we saw glimpses. We’re going to see a lot more of him, I think he’s a hugely talented young player.”

Kai Havertz might have another opportunity to prove that he is truly an 80 million euros player when the club faces the reigning champions of the league, Liverpool, on Sunday.

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