Critics of Chelsea midfielder Kai Havertz should “forget” about the fact that he appears to hide his emotions when his club are on a run of poor form, according to his former coach.
Havertz arrived at Stamford Bridge in September for a deal worth around £71million.
As such, the former Bayer Leverkusen star came with hefty expectations about transferring his Bundesliga form to the Premier League.
However, the Germany international has struggled to settle, with a severe case of coronavirus a chief cause.
When in full health, however, Havertz has faced criticism that he does not show enough fight in bad spells of form. According to his former coach Tayfun Korkut, however, such a trait is irrelevant.
“Kai never shows emotions and when things are not going well, that feels like a mistake,” he told Sky Sports News. “People say that he does not care and he does not fight.
“It is the culture in both England and Germany and it is what I was expecting if his performances were not at the level.
“This is typical and it is why he will probably never be the darling of the supporters because he is not someone who fights, but people really need to forget about that.
“Sometimes not showing your emotions can be in your favour and sometimes it can go against you. At the moment, I think it is going against him a little bit in the eyes of the supporters and the media.
“But I still think that it is not a problem of Kai, I think it is a general problem inside the club. He is 21 and this is the first time abroad.”
Havertz made an instant impression under ex-Chelsea boss Frank Lampard with his early-season form, but that has since levelled off.
However, the 21-year-old has a chance to discover the reliability he showed at Leverkusen under new Blues boss Thomas Tuchel.
Indeed, Korkut believes that the arrival of Havertz’s fellow German could be a “turning point”.
Tuchel turning point for Havertz
“Thomas should be good for him because of the style of play but also because of the language,” Korkut said.
“We can talk a lot about tactics but the human being is more than the tactics. Thomas can help him because he knows him very well and will know how to handle him.
“He has worked at PSG and Dortmund with players of a similar style. If you remember Lampard as a player, he was quite different to Kai. He was more emotional and maybe he felt that was missing in Kai. Sometimes the coach has to adapt to the player as well.
“But I think Thomas can help him. Maybe this is the turning point.”
Chelsea return to action on Sunday when they play Burnley at Stamford Bridge.