Chelsea: Tuchel launches passionate defence of ‘brave’ Kai Havertz

Paul Macdonald
Paul Macdonald
  • Updated: 20 May 2021 11:26 BST
  • 3 min read
Chelsea: Tuchel launches passionate defence of ‘brave’ Kai Havertz

New Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has launched a passionate defence of Kai Havertz.

Tuchel is aware he must get the best out of Havertz and fellow Germany international Timo Werner at Stamford Bridge.

The poor form of the two star summer signings helped contribute to Frank Lampard being sacked as Chelsea boss.

Havertz was signed from Bayer Leverkusen in a deal that could eventually be worth £75 million.

The 21-year-old has only managed one goal and two assists from 12 Premier League outings.

But Tuchel showed faith in him by starting him for his first Chelsea game, a 0-0 draw against Wolves.

Havertz played the full 90 minutes and came within inches of winning the match with a deflected last-gasp header.

‘He has endless potential’

Chelsea host Burnley on Sunday and Tuchel was clear about how good he thinks Havertz can be.

“His potential is endless, almost endless,” Tuchel told reporters.

“It is a challenge for him, and I think he made a very brave choice, you have to understand.

“I am a huge fan of Bayer Leverkusen in terms of how they have developed as a club over the years and what players they developed, the quality of football they play.

“But, you come from Leverkusen to Chelsea, the culture cannot be any more different.

“A club where it is okay to maybe be second or third best, to reach the top four and repeat.

“Then you go to a club where they talk about trophies and winning titles, it is so open.

“There is a certain atmosphere like at Bayern Munich they do this every year, they demand titles, titles and more titles and it does something to a club in the atmosphere.

“So that means that Kai has moved not just to a different country, not only to a different club, not only different team-mates, which itself is already complicated, he even changes his culture and club environment in a dramatic way.

“And I love it because he is so far out of his comfort zone.”

READ MORE: The blockbuster deals of 2020 – Kai Havertz

Tuchel will push Havertz

While understanding why Havertz might have found the transition difficult, Tuchel will push the attacking midfielder hard.

Tuchel added: “What I feel from him is a very friendly, intelligent and open guy, with a lot of potential and we will push him.

“He seems to be like the guy that needs to be pushed, we will not stop it.

“For him, this league is perfect because he cannot rest.

“He has so much potential that he has to be challenged physically also, it is not enough that he can rely on his endless talent.

“In the end, the question is does he have this, can he show his teeth in the end when it gets tough and I was very happy on Wednesday.

“It was him that did almost the decisive header in the box against all the towers from Wolverhampton.

“It would have been a nice goal but he did not hesitate and that is what I want to see from him.

“The rest will come because Kai can be a huge, huge part of this club.”