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Michael Ballack points to key trigger in Kai Havertz’s future

Michael Ballack believes Manchester United target Kai Havertz needs regular Champions League football.

The talented Bayer Leverkusen midfielder is being tracked by some of Europe’s biggest clubs after hitting 15 goals and eight assists this season.

The 20-year-old has scored five goals since the return of the Bundesliga, prompting further links about an exciting Premier League move.

United reportedly hold a keen interest, with the Red Devils not planning on cutting their spending unlike most in Europe.

According to the Manchester Evening News, Havertz is open to moving to the English top flight, a prospect he views as “very realistic” although Bayern Munich are also keen on his services.

Leverkusen director of sport Rudi Voller said this week he hopes to keep Havertz for one more season and Ballack believes finishing in the top four is crucial for joint-fourth placed Bayer in their hopes of keeping the player.

“I think he’s a great talent. He has outstanding technical skills and plays very freely,” Ballack told Sport 1.

“It will be important for him to always play in the Champions League in order to be able to compete with the best. Therefore it will be important for Leverkusen to reach fourth place.”

Ballack also says there is still room for improvement in Havertz.

“One thing is clear – Havertz is not yet a finished player,” added Ballack.


Room for improvement

“That is not meant negatively, but I still see potential for improvement in his personality development and body language.

“But that is completely normal at his age. As a captain, he first has to learn to deal with this responsibility.

“His style of play has always been very carefree. If he ever lost the ball, he was allowed to stop. With a top club, everything will be more difficult and will no longer be accepted.

“He must and will be aware that he has an exceptional position in Leverkusen. He should ask himself now, ‘How long do I want to have this? How long do I enjoy it? Or will I take on the next challenge with even greater demands on my game this summer?’.

“It comes with games and experience, especially with your own aspirations. It is crucial what Havertz demands from himself and his team and where his own path should lead.

“In any case, he has to be mentally ready for a change.”

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