Chelsea teammate Kai Havertz helped with Callum Hudson-Odoi Bayer Leverkusen loan - The Athletic
Kai Havertz helped his Chelsea teammate Callum Hudson-Odoi’s loan move to Bayer Leverkusen where the Englishman is settling in well, The Athletic reports.
The German was signed from the Bundesliga side two years ago for a fee of £75million, and he gave his former employer the nod on his Stamford Bridge colleague being a good option for a temporary move.
He also helped introduce the Chelsea academy product to some figures in the dressing room, but from there Hudson-Odoi, 21, has thrown himself into making the most of his time in Germany.
Liam Twomey writes in The Athletic on Thursday (22 September): “Hudson-Odoi’s early performances have underlined that he is well and truly over the bizarre nerve issue that curtailed last season, as well as reflecting just how seamlessly he has adapted to life in western Germany off the pitch.
“Chelsea colleague Kai Havertz helped beyond giving previous club Leverkusen his seal of approval, making some initial dressing-room introductions.
“Hudson-Odoi has found a squad full of English speakers as well as natural friends in the forms of Frimpong and Timothy Fosu-Mensah, two other graduates of Premier League academies (Manchester’s City and United respectively) who share his Ghanaian family heritage.
“He is still taking German lessons, though, and is determined to assimilate as fully as he can.”
This is a really crucial season for Hudson-Odoi whose career has not progressed over the past three seasons as much as hoped.
He was a serious target for Bayern Munich through 2019 and 2020, with the German giants ready to pay £30million [Sky Sports, 4 October 2020], but signed a lucrative new deal with the Blues.
Injury at the wrong time stalled his development, and he inevitably got lost in the churn of managers in west London subsequently, with Thomas Tuchel probably the least interested in what he could offer of all the managers he has played under.
Rarely if ever given a sustained run in the first-team, what he needs more than anything this year is to play regularly.
There have been suggestions that new boss Graham Potter is willing to recall him in January, based on a widely-reported story from a print edition of Sport Bild in Germany.
Unless the former Brighton boss is ready to make the young attacker a regular starter then he should just leave him where he is to get a full season under his belt.
He’s already made five appearances in the Bundesliga and Champions League this year, which is certainly far more than he would have had under Tuchel, and considering the array of options back in London is probably more than he would get even now.
An entire campaign to get into a rhythm could be the key to him making the next step in becoming the player many expected as a teenager, and perhaps finally convincing his parent club to commit to him on the pitch in the same way they did with his contract.
In other Chelsea news, Armando Broja is impressing the new manager at Stamford Bridge.