He could blame having coronavirus.
He could point to the fact he is still only 21 and having to adjust not only to a new club, but a new country and culture.
But Kai Havertz refuses to hide behind excuses for his poor return of just five goals from his 29 appearances for Chelsea in the six months since his £72million signing.
Havertz accepts he should be doing better and missed Chelsea’s best two chances against Leeds at Elland Road.
He knows more is expected of him because he is Chelsea’s record signing and his billing as Germany’s latest ‘wunderkind’.
This attitude shows that in addition to his huge talent, he has the mentality to succeed at Chelsea.
“Corona is now over, I feel good,” said Havertz. “I had a little injury in the past few weeks, but it’s now time to play good.
“I have to improve my game. It’s not been easy for me, but there are no excuses.
“I just have to keep on working and hopefully there will be a big turnaround soon, but I will give it my best.”
Havertz admits it has been hard settling in England during lockdown following his move from Bayer Leverkusen when he has been cut off from his family in Germany.
But he knows it would be churlish to moan when tens of millions are suffering more than him.
“For me it has been difficult to change everything,” he said. “It’s hard for me, but I’m six months here and getting used to the place, to the country.
“I hope that I will see my family soon. It’s tough for me, I’ve always loved spending time with them.
“It has not been the right time to spend some time with them. But it’s not only me, there are thousands of other people in an even worse situation than me.
“It isn’t an excuse for me. I will give my best.”
Havertz cannot solely be blamed for Chelsea’s tally of just 15 goals from Thomas Tuchel’s first 12 games.
Timo Werner has netted just once in 10 matches under Tuchel, while Hakim Ziyech has not managed a single goal.
“We don’t score enough goals,” said Havertz. “We get good chances, but we’re not clinical enough in front of the goal.
“We had good chances against Leeds, I had two chances myself.
“We have to keep working hard and make it better next time.”
On the flip side, Chelsea’s granite defence remains impervious and this shut-out made it 10 clean sheets under the unbeaten Tuchel.
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The Blues had Edouard Mendy to thank for that and the Senegalese goalkeeper made two fine saves, including a fingernail stop to touch Tyler Roberts’ effort on to the bar.
Roberts also had a goal disallowed for offside for the second match in succession and is still waiting for his first Premier League goal after 17 appearances.
Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa sympathised with the Wales striker and claims he continues to improve.
Bielsa was impressed by how well Roberts moved from the No 10 role to leading Leeds’ attack when Patrick Bamford went off injured and this was arguably his best display of the season.
“Yes, I feel for him,” he said. “But the game today showed an evolution from Tyler in his game as a No 9 as well as a No 10.”