Former Arsenal defender Lee Dixon has offered his support for Kai Havertz, saying that the German needs to be given more time before being judged.
The Gunners signed Havertz from London rivals Chelsea for £65 million in the summer. The German has failed to justify his price tag, putting in disappointing performances in all five appearances so far.
He started Arsenal's first four games but was benched in their 1-0 win at Everton last weekend (September 17) and played just the final 10 minutes.
Reflecting on Havertz's spell at the Emirates so far, Dixon has said that he is willing to give the German more time before many any judgment. He admitted he was unsure of the signing in the first place but believes the former Chelsea man will be a 'slow burner'.
Dixon told NBC Sports (via The Boot Room):
“I was the same as you, I was like ‘Why are we signing him?’. But I was looking at it and I wasn’t sure. All the fans that I know were like what are we signing him for?"
“I do actually quite like him when he plays well, so I’m going to stick up for him here. He’s going to be a slow-burner and I just hope he quickens up with his burning. He needs to get me out of trouble."
“I’m going to stick with him for a bit. Smarter people than me have paid a lot of money for him. I’ll give him a bit more of a chance, I don’t want to make my mind up quite yet.”
Havertz has played in midfield three for Arsenal this season as compared to mostly playing as a centre-forward at Chelsea. He scored 32 goals and provided 15 assists in 139 games for the Blues.
Arsenal given warning by PSV-Eindhoven star ahead of UCL clash
The Gunners return to the UEFA Champions League after six years when they host PSV Eindhoven on Wednesday, September 20.
Ahead of the game, Armel Bella-Kotchap acknowledged Arsenal's quality but said that the Dutch giants could get a result at the Emirates. The defender, who is one loan at PSV from Southampton, told Voetball International:
“They obviously have a lot of quality; Arsenal is not a top team in the Premier League for nothing. But if we perform to the best of our ability, we can really do something there too.”
The two sides also faced off in the UEFA Europa League group stages last season, with both teams winning their respective home fixture.