Soccer

Bayer Leverkusen issue update on Chelsea target Kai Havertz ahead of Europa League clash with Rangers

Bayer Leverkusen coach Peter Bosz insists he has no concerns over Kai Havertz’s commitment levels, vowing the Chelsea target will be the first name down on his team-sheet to face Rangers.

The Germany winger is reported to be close to a £70 million switch to Stamford Bridge, but Bosz does not believe the 21-year-old will have his mind on London when his current employers reacquaint themselves with their Europa League rivals from Glasgow after a five-month break.

Havertz scored the opener from the spot at Ibrox as Leverkusen claimed a 3-1 first-leg lead and they are now looking to finish the job at the BayArena on Thursday.

Download the new Independent Premium app

Sharing the full story, not just the headlines

“I will answer these questions very shortly,” said Bosz at a press conference. “Yes, he will play and yes I’m convinced he’s 100 per cent still fighting for Leverkusen.”

While Havertz is available, Dutchman Bosz has been hit with a selection dilemma ahead of the last-16 return clash.

Paulinho will miss out after rupturing his cruciate ligament, and Dutch winger Karim Bellarabi is struggling with a muscle problem.

Midfielder Nadiem Amiri is also out of the showdown with Steven Gerrard’s men, having been placed in quarantine after coming into contact with a close friend who has since tested positive for coronavirus.

To make matters worse, midfielder Kerem Demirbay and right-back Mitchell Weiser are both suspended, meaning Bosz will have to put his trust in playmaker Charles Aranguiz and left-back Wendell, despite both being just one more booking away from missing a potential quarter-final clash against Inter Milan or Getafe.

Bosz, whose side must win the competition if they want to claim a Champions League spot, said: “We can only win the tournament if we win against Rangers. It doesn’t make any sense to dream ahead to the upcoming matches.

“I’ve tried to convey this to the players that they see it that way.

“We want to progress. If I need players tomorrow who may be at risk of being suspended, they will still play. Our focus is only on progressing.”

PA

Source: Read Full Article