Chelsea: The criticism of Kai Havertz is premature and unwarranted – The Pride of London

Posted: November 11, 2020 at 9:56 am

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BRIGHTON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 14: Kai Havertz of Chelsea runs with the ball during the Premier League match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Chelsea at American Express Community Stadium on September 14, 2020 in Brighton, England. (Photo by Glyn Kirk/Pool via Getty Images

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Even before Kai Havertzs unfortunate contraction of the Coronavirus, commentators have been critical of Chelseas superlative acquisition. The 21-year-old has not set the league on fire from the outset of the campaign and for that, hes been slandered. The message here is this: calm down, he just needs to settle in. This young man will be a sensation, but it may take a short while. Havertz made perfect sense for Chelsea to sign in the summer.Why might it take a while for him to settle in? Lets explore some reasons.

First, Havertz is a young German international. Im not sure how much time he spent in England before signing with the Blues, but to think that transition alone isnt a major difference is naive. Moving to a new country is a major lifestyle move, culture shock and transition. Its tough under the most tranquil of circumstances; now, imagine you are a high-priced youngster moving to play in the English Premier League. The circumstances make it much more difficult and challenging. An overwhelming majority of football supportersespecially punditsshould realize this and know better than to criticize him this early.

England is vastly different than Germany or anywhere else for that matter. To think that a transition from being in Leverkusen to living in London would be easy for any 21-year-old is ignorant. Having to perform at the highest levels of one of the top football clubs in Europe, and the world, places that challenge at a whole other level. Observers should be cognizant of that fact.

Second, Havertz has to communicate in a new language. Its obvious the German had English training in the past, but even then, its new and its different in London.Christian Pulisic will readily acknowledgethat its not always easy to understand English slang. Even Americanswho speak the language regularlyfind it quite difficult on occasion to fully comprehend commentary from UK sportscasters. As George Bernard Shaw oncesaid, England and America are two countries separated by the same language.

Third, Havertz has to play with a whole new bevy of teammates. Absent German national team colleagues Timo Werner and Antonio Rudiger, Havertz has been inserted into a completely new team with which he is unfamiliar. In addition, that new team has a plethora of other new starters who have never played together. This coalescence takes time for any team in any league, especially in a league as demanding as the Premier League where its a monumental challenge.

Fourth, popular wisdom says that playing in the Premier League is different and tougher than any other European league. That change in style and physicality would take an adjustment from even the most hearty physical specimens who make the switch from the continent to the English top flight. Havertzs style is more of finesse than strength, so he will certainly find the transition to be more of a challenge than a more physical player might.

That notwithstanding, expect Havertz to adapt to the enhanced physicality of the Premier League. His strength trainingin coordination with the Chelsea physio teamwill better prepare him for the rigors of the transition. Without a doubt, hell emerge as a true star in the league shortly, perhaps even as soon as early in the new year.

Commentators critical of Havertz should chill and wait until the player fully acclimatizes in a few months to all aspects of his new surroundings. Then they will have to eat crow so to speak when Havertzas a No. 8 in Chelseas midfieldproceeds to wreak havoc on Premier League defenses. It will happen, the only question is how soon? Wait and see.

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Chelsea: The criticism of Kai Havertz is premature and unwarranted - The Pride of London

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November 11th, 2020 at 9:56 am

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