For the second time in five days, Christian Pulisic came onto the pitch for Chelsea and made a major impact for the club. He didn’t drop his head for not being included in the starting lineup, but reaped the reward of coming on and earning playing time for the EPL side.
Pulisic registered a game-winning assist for the second time in five days, helping Chelsea to a 1-0 UEFA Champions League win over Eredivisie hosts Ajax. After coming on in the 66th minute, Pulisic linked up with fellow substitute Michy Batshuayi in the 86th minute on the eventual decisive goal at Johan Cruyff Stadium. Chelsea manager Frank Lampard continued his praise of Pulisic post match after the U.S. Men’s National Team star continued to make the most of his opportunities.
“Sometimes the toughest part of management is leaving out players that really want to play week-in, week-out. You rely on them being positive and coming on to make an impact. Both Michy and Christian [Pulisic] did that so I’m delighted for them both and delighted for the whole squad because it’s great for team spirit when subs come on and make a difference like that,” Lampard said.
“You have to give Christian huge credit because he looked so lively when he came on and the assist is just as important as the finish. The fact that a substitute scored makes me so happy because it’s not easy when you’re picking a similar team every week.”
After a quiet pair of appearances for the USMNT earlier this month, Pulisic has returned to Chelsea and continued to be up for the fight for minutes. Just like against Newcastle United last Saturday, Pulisic came on and helped his team earn a valuable three points.
Pulisic beat fellow USMNT teammate Sergino Dest down the left flank before finding Batshuayi inside of the box with a low pass. He only made 12 passes in the match, but the one that mattered most helped Chelsea steal a win in Amsterdam and move to the top of Group H with six points from three matches.
“I’ve tried to shut my ears to a lot of the outside talk because there’s a lot said. I understand his quality, his young age and the fact it’s a big move for him. He wants to know what I want from him, what the Premier League is like and that’s not always an easy ride but we’ve stayed calm and kept looking at the big picture,” Lampard said.
Wednesday’s win now gives Chelsea six victories in a row heading into Saturday’s Premier League trip to Burnley. Pulisic will look to add to his five assists in all competitions at Turf Moor, before Chelsea takes on Manchester United in the Carabao Cup on Oct. 30th.