Joe Cole says that Kai Havertz can and should lead the line for Chelsea following his ‘excellent’ performance against Bournemouth on Tuesday evening. The Blues beat the Cherries 2-0 at Stamford Bridge with Havertz opening the scoring from Raheem Sterling’s cross, before setting up Mason Mount for the second goal.
The German forward has struggled for consistency since moving to west London in 2020 for a then- club record £72million. The 23-year-old has scored just 28 goals and made 15 assists in 113 appearances for Chelsea, but showed his quality against Bournemouth having been picked in the striker role ahead of Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang.
It was a decision that paid off for Graham Potter and one that Cole hopes the manager sticks with in the future, with the former Chelsea attacking midfielder telling Amazon Prime:
‘Kai Havertz is a very good guy. ‘He was excellent tonight, good goal and an assist. I think he’s the way forward for Chelsea. ‘We want him to be more mean, we want him to do what he did today. Breaking his neck to get in those positions to score goals, like he did tonight.’
The next month is very important month for Chelsea, who have remained eighth in the table but are now just six points off the Champions League spots, with a game in hand over fourth-placed Tottenham. They face back-to-back games against Manchester City in the Premier League and FA Cup as well as a trip to Liverpool in January, and Havertz will have to remain in top form if Potter’s side are to get off to a great start in 2023.
‘The win and the goals hopefully will give us some confidence,’ the forward said post-match. ‘It’s an important win. We have to keep on winning. We need the points. We’ll give our best in the coming games.
‘He [Potter] gives me the freedom to do whatever I feel comfortable on the pitch. I like to play free and to be in the box. He gives me a lot of confidence. ‘I know the vision Raheem has. He loves to play these balls. It was a perfect ball and i was happy to score.’