May 22, 2020 / 2:09 PM / 15 days ago

No rush for Havertz to join Premier League, says Berbatov

(Reuters) - Bayer Leverkusen’s highly-rated young attacking midfielder Kai Havertz should resist a move to the Premier League for the time being and concentrate on developing his game, according to former Leverkusen striker Dimitar Berbatov.

With the Bundesliga still the only one of Europe’s top leagues to return after the coronavirus shutdown, young talents such as Havertz are firmly in the spotlight.

The 20-year-old scored twice in Leverkusen’s 4-1 victory over Werder Bremen on Monday, fuelling reports of interest from the likes of Premier League champions-elect Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea.

“Havertz needs to get used to the sounds that are being made about him following his two goals on Monday night because teams are going to come after him,” said Berbatov, who had five years with Leverkusen before joining Tottenham Hotspur in 2006.

“He has enough quality and if he continues the way he is going teams will still be there, they won’t go away.

“All eyes are on the Bundesliga at the moment and when you score goals and play good football it is no surprise that teams like Liverpool want you.”

Bulgarian Berbatov was in his mid-20s when he moved to the Premier League and believes Havertz could benefit from bulking up before switching to such a high-intensity league.

“I would like to see Havertz in the Premier League at some point, but not right now,” said Berbatov, speaking as an ambassador for betting company Betfair.

“I think it is a bit too early for him. I also think he will need a bit more muscle to play in the Premier League, we all know how defenders can squash you and smash you into pieces and you need to be ready for that if you are going to hit the ground running in such a demanding league.

“I think he should stay at Leverkusen and develop even more and get that experience which will help him for when the time comes to go somewhere else.”

Leverkusen are fifth in the standings, one point behind fourth-placed RB Leipzig and two behind third-placed Borussia Moenchengladbach who they visit on Saturday.

Writing by Martyn Herman; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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