Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has insisted that he still has complete faith in young midfielder Kai Havertz, who has struggled since moving to Stamford Bridge.
The Blues struck a deal with Bayer Leverkusen in the summer which could see 21-year-old Havertz become their most expensive signing ever, but he has struggled to live up to expectations thus far, contributing just five goals and six assists in 26 appearances in all competitions.
Havertz is yet to really feature under Tuchel, missing the last three games through injury, but the boss warned fans that they must be patient if they want to see Havertz reach his full potential in Chelsea blue.
“I am pretty sure we will see that, it takes it’s time and there is no short answer, if there was then I would go and talk to him to bring out his full potential,” Tuchel said (via football.london).
“What we know and what we can rely on is this potential in him, there is logic to show it on the pitch. For every transfer and change of club is different, sometimes you need more time to adapt, sometimes it is quick, sometimes it is a process. All we can do is push him, support him and give him what he needs and we will figure this out.
“He had a really good start with us and I have the feeling that I see a guy who is self aware, humble and incredibly talented.
“There are no doubts that he will show those, sooner the better. Unfortunately he has missed training and matches for us and hopefully he will come back in the next days as I am convinced he will have a big impact.”
With Havertz and fellow summer arrivals Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech all struggling to live up to expectations, it’s been left to Chelsea’s academy graduates to perform in attack. The likes of Mason Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi have been integral to Tuchel’s side, and the boss confessed that he believes homegrown talents should be an important part of any team.
“Maybe you know my last clubs, it was always like this,” he continued. “The door was always open to my office for any of the coaches or officials from the academy and I love to watch the academy training and in-house games but unfortunately that is not possible at the moment as we are in a bubble here and we have different zones and we cannot enter certain zones.
“So this is more difficult than usual but my belief, I have always been of this at any club, the more guys we have that can arrive in the first team is something that the supporters love,
“The young players, they care absolutely about Chelsea, they live it from over many years and they live the spirit. It is a good moment and on the other hand, it is also the most difficult way they choose to make at Chelsea, at Paris, at Dortmund, it is one of the toughest challenges you can have.
“Not only is it straight up, it is sometimes bumpy, you go loan but I like that they have accepted the challenge to make it here and I feel from the boys that they absolutely want to make it as a Chelsea player, not only Premier League players. This is the spirit we want to feel, we will push them.”