Michael Ballack was one of the best from Germany’s previous generation but Ilkay Gundogan says Kai Havertz is better.
Reported Chelsea target Kai Havertz is better than their former midfielder Michael Ballack, according to Ilkay Gundogan.
Bayer Leverkusen are said to be demanding at least €78million (£70m) for Havertz, who has scored 29 goals and supplied nine assists in the Bundesliga since the start of 2018-19.
Manchester City star Gundogan acknowledged his fellow Germany international is a different type of player to Ballack, who was a Champions League runner-up with Leverkusen and Chelsea, as well as a World Cup finalist with Germany.
Havertz has played in a more advanced role over the past two seasons and Gundogan is a bigger fan of his style than that of Ballack.
“I expect great things from him. Kai’s potential is unlimited,” Gundogan told Sport Bild.
“He brings a lot with him and now it is up to him to show his tremendous talent. He has that calmness and composure on the ball and is also a thoughtful guy off of it.
“In my opinion, Havertz is even better than Ballack in terms of his play.
“Ballack had a certain level of aggressiveness and mentality on the pitch; a player type of the previous generation, when you needed to be a b****** in a positive sense.
“Kai is not like that. He does not intentionally foul or lay down a marker with a yellow card.”
While Havertz could be moving to the Premier League, Leroy Sane has left City for Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich.
Gundogan thinks a desire to win trophies in Germany was a key motivating factor in Sane’s decision.
“The day before the move became official he confirmed it to me. It didn’t shock me as I knew it was coming,” he said.
“He’s not won any titles in Germany yet and I think he’ll do great things in the Bundesliga and help Bayern a lot.”
Chelsea have already signed Timo Werner from RB Leipzig and Gundogan expects the forward to make a big impact in England.
“Believe me: Everyone at City knows about Timo Werner. Many of my team-mates asked what kind of guy he is. He deserves respect,” said Gundogan.