Both Germans arrived in London in the summer but haven’t done well so far in their maiden Premier League season.
Timo Werner and Kai Havertz arrived at Chelsea with not only hefty price tags but also enormous expectations. With the Blues having spent over £200m in the summer transfer window and the signing of the German duo eating up much of their finances, there was a feeling that they would be crucial in a potential title challenge for the Premier League.
A few months later and they’re currently 11 points away from the top. Both are yet to properly get going and have been frustrated by repeated setbacks. However, as they say, it’s always the darkest before dawn. For Werner and Havertz, this difficult time will pass too. When it does, they will become successful and here are five reasons why:
5. Havertz still recovering from after-effects of COVID-19
Kai Havertz’s disappointing start to his Chelsea career didn’t get any help when he got infected with COVID-19 last year. While the German midfielder has since returned, the lingering after-effects have brought down the performance levels of many stars. Indeed, Paul Pogba has spoken in detail about how he struggled to take part in training and finish games for Manchester United, post the illness.
Trent Alexander-Arnold’s performances have also dipped after he picked up the infection last September. The virus has ill-effects on players. Therefore, once Havertz regains his peak fitness levels, he should start proving how good he is.
4. They’re yet to be part of a set attack
The thing about both Kai Havertz and Timo Werner is that they haven’t been able to create partnerships with their teammates at Chelsea yet. That is because of Frank Lampard’s constant tinkering with the team and injury issues for new signing Hakim Ziyech. Once both are well-connected with Ziyech, they should play more freely in attack.
That should also mean that Ziyech creates more definitive chances for Werner as well as opening up space for Havertz to pounce upon. Once they get to play a number of games alongside the same fellow attacking stars over a period of time, Havertz and Werner contribute more goals.
3. Werner yet to be played in his natural position
Werner has only played four full Premier League games for Chelsea as a striker this season, with Lampard switching between Olivier Giroud and Tammy Abraham for that role. Often shifted to the left wing or sometimes even to the right, Werner has had to switch his playing style and that has impacted his best qualities.
The matter remains that he hasn’t been playing in his strongest areas. Once Werner gets to play more games as a centre-forward, getting the freedom to cause havoc through the middle, he should be involved in more goals and play more like himself.
2. Age is on their side
The exact reason why Chelsea had to pay big money for both Werner and Havertz is due to their age and ultimate potential. Werner (24) might’ve done a lot of good things early in his career, but that doesn’t mean he’s peaked already. Havertz (21) is yet to reach his best years. Chelsea are hoping they will both do just that in London, but for that the team needs to be built around them. This includes opting for a more fluid, fast-paced attacking style and not being predictable.
Both the stars will continue adapting to the Premier League as the years pass by and eventually they will build themselves to deal with the physical intensity of the games. They might be having disappointing debut campaigns, but the German duo are here for the long run and will start showing how dangerous they can be in due course.
1. Change is inevitable
Chelsea have always been a club who almost revel at the prospect of change. They have changed managers like flies since Roman Abramovich took over. Now, with Lampard not being able to perform at the highest level, he could unfortunately be the latest victim of the ordeal. That, however, can actually be a blessing in disguise for Werner and Havertz. Lampard hasn’t been able to utilize their talents properly or play them in their natural roles.
Chelsea are reportedly looking to get Thomas Tuchel as Lampard’s successor, a move which can do wonders for the German duo. Indeed, having a progressive German manager who knows how to help players unlock their utmost potential and plays an unpredictable attacking style can really benefit the two stars.