By Aaron Hindhaugh •
Published: 27 Sep 2023 • 9:10
Image of Arsenal's Emirates Stadium.
CREDIT: 'Emirates Stadium by fakelvis is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
Mark Goldbridge has slammed Kai Havertz and labelled him as the main problem at Arsenal this season.
The Gunners will have left the Emirates on Sunday afternoon feeling like they had lost the North London derby due to the fact they squandered two lead at home, and the second one lasted just a few seconds before Jorginho was caught in possession.
Mikel Arteta and the Arsenal fans will likely point to the fact they were forced into a half-time substitution that saw Jorginho replace the injured Declan Rice – who is expected to be fine after a back scare – but the second change was all of the manager’s making.
Arteta decided the hook off Fabio Vieira at half-time with the Portuguese man having completed 11 passes so he wasn’t doing a fantastic job in the centre of midfield, but given his natural ability in that central role, it would’ve made sense for him to stay on instead of being replaced by Havertz.
It was seen as a bizarre singing at the time when Arsenal decided to move for Havertz after he failed to shine in a number of positions for Chelsea, but Arteta certainly saw something in him as the Gunners willingly splashed out £65 million.
However, the German international has started just four Premier League games for the Gunners and has looked incredibly uncomfortable in a midfield role alongside captain Martin Odegaard, which Godbridge has pointed out on ‘The Football Fill In‘.
“To be honest, Havertz is the problem,” Goldbridge claimed. “I just think it’s boring to talk about it, I don’t get why they bought him and the balance isn’t there.
“I’d rather see him as the number nine than in the midfield destroying Odegaard’s game.”
Against Tottenham Hotspur, Havertz touched the ball just 23 times, lost possession five times and only completed 11 passes (Sofascore) during his second-half showing as Spurs looked to step up a gear and influence the game more often.
It’s still early days for Havertz and his Arsenal career, but the signs are not looking good as he’s struggling to nail down a position in Arteta’s first team and when he does get a chance the midfielder/striker looks off the pace, so it could prove to be a major transfer blunder by the Gunners.
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