• Analysis

Why Kai Havertz should transform into a forward

Kai Havertz
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The young Bayer Leverkusen prodigy plays behind the top three but has all the attributes to make it amongst the forward men.

Werder Bremen needed three points to get out of the whole they had dug themselves in. They required a win to return brightly with Bundesliga’s resumption.

But it was not the case. They came up against a resurgent Bayer Leverkusen side. No one would have assumed Die Werkself will be in the hint for Champions League slots. But they have turned their fortunes.

Central to their changing fortunes is Kai Havertz’s phenomenal performances. The 20-year-old continues to go from strength to strength, and is not looking back.

Havertz turns 21 this June and is one of the few players his age to accumulate 140 competitive appearances. There is good enough chance he might make the prestigious 150 mark before his next birthday.

And as June 11 approaches and celebrates another birthday, he has to look at his future. Surely, he would be pleased with the progress he has made.

But there is more to come from him and to unlick that, he needs to change his role in Bayer’s setup. He has played as a winger and in a withdrawn attacking midfield role, but now is the time to step up.

The Aachen native has to start playing centrally. He has shown that he has the right physical attributes to lead the lines. And his technical knowhow will allow him to settle in that role easily.

As it stands, he has an impeccable understanding with Kevin Volland. The duo combine effortlessly and change roles during the game.

It is because of this reason that they have similar stats. While Havertz has 8 goals and five assists, the older Volland has 9 goals and 7 assists.

Playing alongside Volland is a good learning experience. But he cannot stay in a withdrawn role for long. Given his imposing physical development, he has to move ahead and start playing as a forward.