Jamie Redknapp has urged Chelsea fans to give Kai Havertz time to adjust to life in the Premier League before judging him.
The west Londoners signed the Germany international from Bayer Leverkusen earlier this month for a club-record fee of £70million.
Chelsea’s new No.29 has yet to make a serious impression on Blues fans, with many already questioning his hefty pricetag.
Redknapp believes the questions over Havertz’s worth are premature and insists he needs to be given time to showcase his true ability.
“It’s a question of time,” Redknapp said of Havertz during an appearance on Sky Sports. “He’s a young man that’s just come to the country.
“He had trained with the club for five days and was miles off it when he was thrown into the game against Brighton. He played half the game today and I don’t think it suited him as the striker.
“You’ve got to give the lad time. It’s hard but it’s hard enough for an English player moving to a new club in the Premier League let alone a foreigner.
1. Real Madrid – £1.286bn (£205m fall from 2019)
2. Barcelona – £1.280bn (£18.1m rise)
3. Manchester United – £1.190bn (£143m fall)
4. Liverpool – £1.143bn (£64.3m rise)
5. Manchester City – £1.018bn (£118m fall)
6. Bayern Munich – £957m (£233m fall)
7. Paris Saint-Germain – £876m (£48m rise)
8. Chelsea – £859m (£17m fall)
9. Tottenham Hotspur – £710m (£23.5m rise)
10. Arsenal – £651m (£150m fall)
“We’ve got to be very careful as we’re judging a player and already labelling where he’s going to play.
“He’s a tremendous player and he’s got lots of talent. They’ve got to give it time. They’ve got [Christian] Pulisic and [Hakim] Ziyech to come in and he’s a No 10 who’s going to go head-to-head with Mason Mount.
“I think with the three midfielders they had in there today, they need a bit more craft. N’Gole Kane was the most progressive and looking to make things happen but that’s not his job.
“I look at Kante as the sort of player who will break it up and get it to players who can do that job.
“Surely we can’t be questioning him already as he’s been here for two minutes?”
Havertz and his Chelsea team-mates will be back in action on Wednesday night, welcoming Championship side Barnsley to Stamford Bridge for their Carabao Cup third-round tie.