Paul Merson has given his concern about Chelsea star Kai Havertz, who he’s suggested may have lost his place in the starting XI and may need to be patient trying to break back into it.
The Germany international has been absent for the last few matches and that’s opened the door for teammate Mateo Kovacic to impress.
With N’Golo Kante at the base of the midfield and Mason Mount operating as the left-sided number eight, that leaves room for one other to complete the trio in the centre of the park.
Havertz, who was a £71million (BBC) signing in the summer, has shown he can operate as the second attacking midfielder in tandem with Mount.
But the 21-year-old left-footer is more of a luxury player that is extremely creative and likes to roam freely, while Kovacic adds slightly more steel in the centre of the park and is more disciplined.
Frank Lampard’s side face current Premier League leaders Tottenham on Sunday and there may be a big decision for the manager to make on his line-up, particularly in the midfield area.
Sky Sports pundit Merson has suggested Havertz should be left on the bench this weekend against Spurs and feels Chelsea shouldn’t change a winning formula.
“Chelsea have found the right blend up front without Kai Havertz in the team and he might find himself on the fringes now,” Merson wrote in the Daily Star.
“It’s so competitive there now that if you find yourself out of the team it could be hard to get back in… Havertz wasn’t pulling up any trees before he missed those games. He’s a young lad who needs time to settle. I wouldn’t throw him back in against Tottenham because they look better without him right now.”
Havertz has had some criticism aimed at him for his start at Stamford Bridge, but it’s worth noting he’s scored four goals and made three assists in 11 appearances so far this season.
He’s one of the summer signings that has perhaps not hit top gear yet and fans are waiting to see the star that lit up the Bundesliga with Bayer Leverkusen.
But there has been more than enough glimpses to show his ability and it will be a big disappointment if a £70million signing is benched for a huge fixture wth Spurs.