The Germany international isn’t a combative figure but he is still highly valued by the Blues manager
Thomas Tuchel has said Kai Havertz will never be a fiery personality like Diego Costa was at Chelsea, but insisted the young attacker can still shine as a more subdued figure.
The 21-year-old scored and got an assist in the 4-1 away win at Crystal Palace, the first time that Tuchel’s side have scored more than twice in the 17 games he’s been in charge.
In a new false nine role, Havertz excelled at Selhurst Park after being criticised for his performance in his side’s win over Porto in midweek. Tuchel believes that Havertz has been misunderstood since arriving in west London.
What he said?
“He is simply not that guy that will fully feel, or you will see enraged,” Tuchel told reporters after the match. “Some guys, you feel they have to fight with others to get certain momentum.
“He is not a Diego Costa kind of guy. This is simple. I will never demand he will become this. Sometimes you cannot confuse with his body language that he doesn’t give everything. He is a very quiet character and we are aware of his quality.
“I don’t know a level that he is reaching and how fast he can do it. I can just repeat that he stepped out of his comfort zone coming from Leverkusen to the Premier League; you want to challenge yourself. Here he is and it is up to him to show the quality.
“He has shown already very strong performance against Everton and Atletico. For us, he had a tough match against Porto and the speech was very easy: Go and show you can do better and fight for your place. He gets a second chance and he took that.
“He can be even more ruthless in finishing because he has extra quality. He doesn’t have to be our emotional leader because he is not that guy and it is not necessary.
“But, in terms of controlling the ball, keeping it in difficult situations, having little runs, being in high positions and having good finishing, this is what we demand. He needs to show up and show up. This is life as an offensive player at Chelsea.”
What does the opposition think?
Eagles manager Roy Hodgson was disappointed with his side’s overall performances, particularly in the first half, but went on to praise Havertz.
“Yes, he is excellent,” Hodgson said. “We knew that before the game started. We have seen enough of him playing at Leverkusen before he arrived during lockdown when we weren’t getting football except the Bundesliga.
“I have seen a lot of him since he has been at Chelsea. We know what he is about. He is an enormous talent, who is very skillful on the ball, got good movement but to some extent, that’s what Chelsea were expecting.
“They invested a lot of money in him. It was their desire to get a player like him and bring him to the club so it was no surprise to me today to see him playing the way he did. It was unfortunate for us that he played that well.”