Kai Havertz (l.) made 24 Bundesliga appearances in his breakthrough season with Bayer Leverkusen.
Kai Havertz (l.) made 24 Bundesliga appearances in his breakthrough season with Bayer Leverkusen.

Leverkusen teenager Kai Havertz living the dream

A Bayer Leverkusen regular and still only 17, Kai Havertz is penning his own boy-done-good story.

The Aachen-born midfielder has posted all manner of milestones since being handed his Bundesliga debut last October, all whilst studying for his high-school exams.

"Not in my wildest dreams did I see it going so well for me on a personal level, when I think back to this time last year," Havertz said after scoring twice in Leverkusen's 6-2 rout of Hertha Berlin. "I could have had a hat-trick! It gives me a lot of confidence for next season."

Given the direction his life has taken in the last seven months, it is clear why young Havertz is already looking ahead to 2017/18 with such relish. After becoming Leverkusen's youngest ever Bundesliga debutant, aged 17 and 126 days, the Germany Under-16 and U17 international has gone on to make a further 23 appearances in Germany's top flight.

Havertz registered his maiden Bundesliga assist in the Matchday 16 Rhine derby draw with Cologne and followed suit in wins over Frankfurt and Augsburg. He went one better in the 3-3 draw with Wolfsburg on Matchday 26, firing his name into the Bayer history books as the club's youngest ever goalscorer.

Watch: Havertz rides to Leverkusen's rescue against Wolfsburg

Thanks to his Matchday 32 leveller at Ingolstadt and his two-goal salvo in the capital on the final day, Leverkusen's fledgling talent finished his breakthrough campaign with a total of four Bundesliga goals - as well as six assists.

"Being in the team, scoring goals, chipping in with assists: it's just fantastic for me," Havertz enthused after becoming the Bundesliga's second-youngest player of all time - behind Timo Werner - to hit a brace. "It's not been the best season for the team, but we ended on a real high note [against Hertha], and showed what we're capable of."

Watch: Havertz spared Leverkusen's blushes at the Audi-Sportpark

Although a sub-par campaign for 12th-placed Leverkusen, 2016/17 could hardly have gone much better for Havertz. The 17-year-old has an oral maths exam to swot up for before he can enjoy a well-earned vacation, but while the majority of his high-school peers ponder their next move, Bayer's boy wonder already has a career in the Bundesliga mapped out ahead of him.

"I'll try to keep my head clear," he told media. "That'll do me good, especially after the double burden of juggling school and football. That way I'll be fresh for the new season."

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