Bayer Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voller has suggested that the club will evaluate the future of young star Kai Havertz this summer amid widespread interest in the attacking midfielder.
Havertz was reportedly the subject of an offer from Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool before the start of the season, but Leverkusen have managed to hold onto their prized asset for another year at least.
The 20-year-old has hit five goals and recorded a further two assists in 19 Bundesliga appearances so far this campaign, having recovered from a patch of sub-par form to return to his best.
“I am glad that we still held [on to Kai Havertz] this year,” Voller said on the TV programme ‘100% Bundesliga – Football at Nitro’.
“We'll see how it looks in summer. He still has a contract until 2022 - these are, of course, the classic facts.
“There was already interest in the summer, but we told him that it would be good for him to stay with us for another year. And that was the right decision.”
Fellow guest and Tottenham coach Steffen Freund went one step further and suggested that the young playmaker should remain with his current employers for another 12 months.
Havertz’s deal at Leverkusen is not due to expire until the summer of 2022, meaning the Bundesliga side are in a strong negotiating position in the upcoming transfer window.
However, Freund admitted that the lure of a significant wage increase – as well as the prospect of challenging for silverware on a regular basis at a different club – could turn the youngster’s head.
“I know it's a lot about money, but I would advise him to stay at Bayer Leverkusen for another season,” Freund added.
“Bayer Leverkusen is under no pressure because it is a long-term contract. I also know that Rudi Voller recommends that to him.
“But then comes the pressure with consultants, large clubs that can also win titles, which is relatively rare with Leverkusen. Then it is just too good at some point [to stay at] Leverkusen. But why not another year?”
Leverkusen – fifth in the Bundesliga – host Porto in the first leg of their Europa League knockout tie on Thursday night.