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Arsenal may have been given further encouragement to stick with Kai Havertz despite the £65million summer signing not making the impact he would have hoped for since arriving at the Emirates. The 24-year-old has scored just one goal – a penalty against Bournemouth – in 12 appearances so far this season but has been given the backing of a major sponsor.
Puma recently announced a long-term partnership with Havertz that will see the Arsenal star wear their boots and attire during matches, in what appears to be a big vote of confidence in the struggling star.
Havertz was clearly buoyed by the news, having signed a brand deal to become the face of Puma just a few months after swapping Chelsea for their London rivals Arsenal. “Growing up in Germany PUMA has always been an iconic brand with some of the greatest players ever wearing their products,” Havertz said.
“PUMA has always been an innovative brand when it comes to football boots and the way they work with athletes. When I met with the team and discussed plans for the future, I knew this was the right fit for me.”
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This comes at a time when Havertz has found himself out of the Arsenal team, having played just 15 minutes in the top-of-the-table Premier League clash with Manchester City – though after coming off the bench he did tee up Gabriel Martinelli for his deflected winning strike.
Mikel Arteta has not been afraid to take Havertz out of the firing line as he awaits his first goal from open play, as he did not start the north London derby and was named on the bench for the trip to Everton, leading some sections of the fanbase to wonder whether Havertz deserves to start for Arsenal.
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He has often played on the left of Arteta’s midfield trio with Declan Rice and Martin Odegaard, but Fabio Vieira has also impressed in that role while Thomas Partey has since stepped up his return to fitness and could play alongside Rice and Odegaard, especially in tougher games.
Havertz does retain the confidence of his boss Arteta, however, as the Spanish head coach used an unorthodox analogy earlier in the season when explaining that his summer signing needs to be patient but persistent in order to encourage the new Puma star to keep the faith.
“I said to him yesterday, things are a little bit hard at the beginning,” Arteta explained in August. “When I met my wife at the beginning it was hard to conquer her, I had to try and message and go and go.
“At the end when she said, ‘yes, we want to be together’, it’s beautiful. I said in the first day you know it’s not that great. So it’s good, but I think the crowd was really good with him today.”
Arsenal’s new kit for 2023/2024 is a stylish twist on a classic as it reinvents that mid-1990s vibe. A truly modern-looking shirt with a homage to the past, the Nike kit also includes a nod to the club’s iconic Invincible’s side in the finer details while catching the eye with the lightning bolt motif
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