Thursday, July 25, 2024

Havertz makes Kane comparison as he admits ´I don´t understand discussion´ around Germany role

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 28 Jun 2024

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Kai Havertz compared himself to Harry Kane as the Germany forward admits “I don’t understand the discussion” around his central role for the Euro 2024 hosts.

Havertz led the line in each of Germany’s three Group A games at the tournament, scoring a penalty and providing an assist in their opening 5-1 rout of Scotland on matchday one.

Although, the Arsenal forward failed to add to that tally in the next two games, with Niclas Fullkrug netting twice from the bench including a late equaliser against Switzerland.

Havertz has often drawn criticism suggesting he does not score enough goals while operating as a number nine, but he insists there is more to the role than just finding the net – noting England and Bayern Munich forward Kane as an example.

“Football has developed incredibly, especially in recent years,” he told Sport1. “Who in European football is really such a classic centre-forward? Erling Haaland, perhaps.

“Not even Harry Kane is one for me. He has a great finish, but he doesn’t just stand in front of the box and wait for the ball. That’s why I don’t understand the discussion.

“I’ve been very successful in this position for the last six months. I feel comfortable up front and see myself in this position in the long term.”

It remains to be seen whether Havertz will retain his starting role when Germany face Denmark in the round of 16 on Saturday. Fullkrug has certainly staked his claim to Julian Nagelsmann.

With four goals from six appearances in major tournaments – all from the bench – only Poland’s Ernst Wilimowski (one every 30 minutes) boasts a better minutes-per-goal ratio than the 31-year-old (one every 35 minutes) among all European players to play at least 100 minutes at the World Cup and European Championship combined.

“Nobody can assume that [they will be starting],” Havertz added. “I’m a player who needs confidence. It’s important to work hard in training and give everything in the games. I can say that about myself. Everyone wants to be on the pitch. In the end, the coach decides.

“Denmark have a very good team with many good individual players. But they also work as a team. It’s going to be a tough game, but I’m convinced of our quality. I think we can do it [win].”

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