Chelsea spent a lot of money revamping their side last year, with Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, and Kai Havertz, three of the most interesting players to have joined the ranks at Stamford Bridge.
The Blues had impressed on several fronts prior to the turn of the year, putting a 17-game win streak together across all competitions, but they have been in really poor form since then – although a recent 4-0 FA Cup win over Morecambe on Sunday could see to a much-needed turnaround.
Werner had to shoulder the misfortune of being played on the left flank after getting down to a good start but the contrasting fortunes of Ziyech and Werner have also had lots to do with Chelsea’s rotten run of form. Ziyech, while hampered by injury issues, took no time to mesh and remains one of the Blues’ more impressive signings, while Havertz is taking a lot longer to his new surroundings.
To the German’s credit, he’s had to drop out of the team due to contracting COVID-19 and isn’t being played in the position that saw him named among the most impressive youngsters in Europe while at Bayer Leverkusen. Typically deployed as a No.10 or at the central point of a three-man attack, Havertz showed enough to convince Chelsea to make him the most expensive acquisition in club history.
Peter Bosz, who coached Kai at Leverkusen, has offered an explanation as it pertains to the differences between Ziyech and Havertz.
“As for Kai, I can see why Chelsea brought him in but I cannot yet see the exact idea Frank Lampard has for him,” Bosz said in an interview with The Athletic. It’s really good that he protects him in the press, though. But in the end, you must deliver, you must score goals and make goals. For a €100 million transfer you must play, and he isn’t.”
“Kai plays the piano, but Hakim is from the streets. If there’s a free-kick, he will just walk up and
take it. He’s like that.”
The manager seems to be implying that Ziyech is more fearless, which makes him more confident.
Havertz, though, got himself on the score sheet against Morecambe on Sunday and, asked what level he thought the player was at in the wake of the display, Blues boss Frank Lampard chose to speak of his potential instead.
“I can’t call that because there are endless levels Kai can go up,” he said, “because of the potential of the player and he’s young. He had Covid and suffered a bit but has come back. Today I saw, and again in the week in training, him fitter and stronger.”
“There are levels for Kai to go up but again we have to remain patient. He’s come here with a huge amount of talent, but has to get accustomed to the league. We as a club must support him in that, now and for the future. It’s a small step in the big picture, but a good step.”
Ziyech has prompted no such questions. The Morrocan star, who joined the London side from Ajax prior to the end of last season, has put together a number of incredible displays, slotting into the side with little issue and forming an instant understanding with full-back Reece James on the right flank.
The Blues were atop the Premier League table just a few weeks ago but are currently languishing in the ninth spot after a torrid stretch. They’re now 66/1 to win the league after being among the favourites for England’s top prize at the start of the season. They’re 11/6 to win their upcoming game against Fulham, however, with several parlay opportunities there for the taking.
Lampard will need Ziyech to remain at his brilliant best if he is to keep his job as Chelsea manager but, even more so, he needs Havertz to keep on improving. Blues owner Roman Abramovic is not known for his patience and, despite seeing his team secure a Champions League place on the back of losing Eden Hazard coupled with a transfer ban, the Russian will not be in a forgiving mood if the club legend can’t get the best out of Chelsea’s most expensive buy.
Meanwhile, 19-year-old Billy Gilmour has offered the manager some hope after impressing on Sunday. The Scottish youngster has returned to the team after recovering from a serious knee injury suffered last July and, following the win on Sunday, Lampard admitted he could soon be a regular on the pitch.
source: Tauro Sports
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