Recall that Chelsea won the UEFA Champions League and finish in the Premier League top four last season without Lukaku who was banging in the goals at Inter Milan then.
Ahead of the 2021-2022 season, Chelsea decided to be more ambitious by paying Inter Milan a whopping €113 million including addons to fortify the squad. To the dismay of most Chelsea fans who thought Lukaku would be a hit at Chelsea, the Belgian striker managed to show consistency in his first five games at the club.
Afterward, Lukaku who was expected to convert all the goalscoring opportunities Chelsea were not converting last season, suddenly became the shadow of his former self.
Though he scored two of the goals that helped Chelsea to win the FIFA Club World Cup, Lukaku has continued to be one of the most criticized players at Stamford Bridge this season.
The Belgium international who reportedly earns over £350,000-per-week at Chelsea hit rock bottom on Saturday, February 19 during the Premier League game between Chelsea and Crystal Palace when he created a record in the Premier League of being the first player to touch the ball seven times in 90 minutes.
Such a performance attracted a series of criticism to the Belgian record goalscorer. Even though Chelsea’s coach, Thomas Tuchel said the club would protect Lukaku, the coach benched him in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match against Lille on Tuesday.
The Belgium international sat on the bench for 90 minutes and ended the night as one of the club’s unused substitutes which goes to show that coach Tuchel was not happy with his performance.
In Lukaku’s place, Kai Havertz who is gradually gaining legendary status at Chelsea due to the important goals he often scores for the club used the Champions League game against Lille to prove that he is a better alternative to Lukaku even though he is not a natural striker.
Coach Tuchel used Kai Havertz throughout the Champions League game and the German attacking midfielder did not disappoint the coach as he scored a first-half opener in Chelsea’s 2-0 win over Lille.
Why did coach Thomas Tuchel replace Lukaku with Kai Havertz
Kai Havertz’s role as an attacking midfielder is gradually giving way for a false nine role since Romelu Lukaku failed to turn up for Chelsea in recent times.
While explaining why he benched Lukaku for Kai Havertz in the 2-0 win over Lille, coach Tuchel said: I am really pleased for Kai. His effort, work rate, and the volume and areas of the pitch that he covers for us are immense and very good. He is never shy of defending…
“We focused on intensity, high speed, and hard work off the ball. Romelu struggled in the last games to deliver that.”
Kai Havertz’s stats at Chelsea 2021-2022 season
On September 4, 2020, Chelsea paid a German club Bayern Leverkusen a whopping €80 million to bring Kai Havertz to the club.
Initially, the 22-year-old German international struggled to establish himself at the Premier League club but never fails to show up when it matters most.
His biggest moment was a UEFA Champions League final between Chelsea and Manchester City in May 2021. He scored the lone goal that gave Chelsea a 1-0 victory over City that won the club their second Champions League title.
On February 12, 2022, Havertz confirmed that he is a player for the big moment by scoring a spot-kick that won Chelsea their first FIFA Club World Cup title in Abu Dhabi.
So far this season, Kai Havertz whose natural position is the attacking midfielder role, has scored 7 goals and provided 4 assists in 30 games in all competitions.
What are the details on Kai Havertz’s contract with Chelsea?
Based on the contract Kai Havertz signed with Chelsea on 4 September 2020, the German footballer reportedly earns £7,800,000 per year. This means that Havertz weekly take-home is £150,000.
The 22-year-old attacking midfielder who is now used as a false nine at Chelsea is expected to stay at Chelsea until June 30, 2025, when his current contract with the club is expected to expire.
Reports claim that the net worth of Havertz is approximately €1.9 million. Havertz is currently dating his childhood sweetheart Sophia Weber.