Arsenal star Kai Havertz has had a disappointing start to the season for both club and country, and has received criticism for his performance levels.

He is yet to score or assist following his big-money move to Arsenal from Chelsea, and questions have been raised about his place in the side under Mikel Arteta.

Havertz started as a central striker for Germany as they lost 4-1 to Japan in a humiliating defeat, and he was particularly poor yet again. It seems that the 24-year-old is low on confidence, and is struggling to perform for both Arteta and Hansi Flick.

German football expert Andy Brassell has now defended Havertz, claiming on TalkSPORT that his stint at Chelsea is likely to have dented his confidence, and hinted that it will take time for him to adapt.

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“To an extent, I think the thing is, we often think that a 22 or 23 year old player should be the finished article, especially when he’s cost that much money, especially when he scored the winning goal in the Champions League final,” he stated.

“He’s a work in progress. I don’t think there’s any reason that he couldn’t be a good centre-forward in the years to come. He definitely showed signs of being able to do that at Leverkusen.

“I think we’ve seen other good players at Chelsea lose their way and we’re seeing a lot of players that Chelsea lose their way at the moment. So I think the environment’s got something to do that and obviously he’s brand new at Arsenal.”

Where should Havertz play?

Havertz has not offered enough in his current midfield role to show that he can succeed there going forward.

Arsenal have lacked a spark in midfield at times this season even when dominant on the ball, and Havertz’s lack of dynamism on the ball has contributed to this.

International FriendlyGermany v Japan
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Arteta should perhaps try and fit Havertz into a role which plays to his physical strengths more, and a centre-forward role as a target man could be the way to get the best out of Havertz.

His physical stature and strength in the air means that Havertz could succeed as someone to disrupt the opposition defence, win headers and create space for others, rather than trying to play in a creative midfield role.

It is early days, but so far there are many questions about the former Chelsea star’s ability to fit into an Arsenal side aiming to compete for the title.

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