Arsene Wenger has tipped Kai Havertz to become a future world-beater – but his verdict on Timo Werner is far less glowing.
Chelsea raided the Bundesliga last summer to sign Havertz from Bayer Leverkusen for £72million and Werner from RB Leipzig for £54million.
The forward pair struggled to adapt at first and managed just four goals in the Premier League between them by the turn of the year.
The decision to appoint Thomas Tuchel as Frank Lampard’s successor in January was partly motivated by getting the best out of the faltering big-money signings.
The German has had a positive effect on his compatriots and Havertz ended the season strongly, scoring the winner in the Champions League final.
Wenger admits he was “amazed” to see how long it took Havertz to find his feet, but he is sure the 21-year-old will go from strength to strength.
“I believe that Havertz was very disappointing at the start,” the legendary former Arsenal boss told beIN Sports.
“I liked him and I was quite amazed how much trouble he had at the start to settle.
“He adjusted, adapted, he came back, he suffered, he spent his period on the bench and came back again. To me, he is a very promising player. I would bet on him for the future.”
Wenger was less optimistic as he turned his attention to Werner, criticising the 12-goal striker’s wastefulness in front of goal and hinting that could cost Germany at this summer’s Euros.
“I like the quality of his runs,” Wenger said of the 25-year-old. “I like his movement, but he’s not… we see his conversion rate with the number of chances he has.
“He’s not good enough to say, ‘but he will be absolutely the favourite to be the player of the tournament [Euro 2020]’.
“Because in this kind of tournaments, you have to, you need a good conversion rate.”
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Germany have been drawn in the so-called group of death at Euro 2020, alongside Portugal, Hungary and Wenger’s native France.
The Gunners icon expects Die Mannschaft will struggle to emerge from the group in what is Joachim Low’s last tournament as manager.
“I’m not very confident for Germany,” said Wenger. “I grew up at the border of Germany and I feel they have not the stability. They have lost the belief.
“The Germans, to be successful you need in the team a combination of hunger, belief, aggression, and that you’re capable to fight the doubt. I believe in Germany belief has gone.”
Wenger added: “They need to start well to have a chance. After that, for me, they have another hurdle; it is the last tournament [for] Joachim Low, who has done fantastic for Germany.
“To be completely honest, I have not seen a team doing well with the players knowing that the manager is not there anymore after the tournament.”