Christian Pulisic may not have been credited with an assist in Chelsea’s 1-0 win over Newcastle United on Saturday, but the U.S. Men’s National Team star did have a major impact in the match.
After coming on as a second-half substitute, Pulisic helped in the build-up play on the Blues’ game-winning goal at Stamford Bridge. Pulisic linked up with Callum Hudson-Odoi before the fellow youngster assisted on Marcos Alonso’s 73rd-minute goal. It was a positive cameo for Pulisic who received praise postmatch from manager Frank Lampard.
“I am pleased for Christian as he is a hot topic because of the price tag and his status with his national team,” Lampard said, “but everyone has got carried away with the short term, and the long term is he has come here and has just turned 21 and it is good to see him play like he did today and there is more to come.”
“He should feel good about today because he was a big part of us winning.”
Pulisic returned to Chelsea following a disappointing spell with the USMNT in Concacaf Nations League play. Despite scoring in a 7-0 thrashing of Cuba, the 21-year-old failed to have an impact in a 60-minute appearance against Canada, a game which the USMNT lost 2-0.
Being able to have an impact at club level should continue to give Pulisic confidence going forward as Chelsea now turns towards a trip to Ajax in the UEFA Champions League group stage. It is undecided if Pulisic will get the start under Lampard in Amsterdam against the in-form hosts, but he remains happy after his performance on Saturday.
“It was a really good game, happy for the team, had a strong performance, they defended really well, and I was happy to make an impact,” Pulisic told ESPN after the match.
“I was going to shoot last-second, but I saw Tammy wide open and then DeAndre made an unbelievable block, so maybe I should have shot it. I just don’t have that scoring touch, but I know it will come back.”
Pulisic has three assists in seven appearances domestically with Chelsea, but is still seeking his first goal in competitive action for the club.
Want Pulisic to shoot more. Sounds like he knows it at least.
Two games in a row i between an international break, Pulisic came off the bench, one actually quite late and made immediate impacts contributing to a goal for Chelsea. These were encouraging news and a confidence boost for CP22. One thing I can’t help but noticed from watching City’s Champions League game today. Raheem Sterling scored a second-half hat-trick as Manchester City came from behind to thrash Atalanta 5-1 at the Etihad Stadium. The way Sterling moved/sprinted off the ball and created space for himself was world class and clinical. The USMNT’s manager and assistants should hold regular film study sessions to help our forwards, Altidore, Sargent, Zardes, etc, as well as wingers & midfielders, Pulisic, Morris, Arriola, McKennie, Adams, Lletget, Boyd, etc. on how to create spaces and passing lanes for their teammates, even defenders to pass them the ball. I’ve been frustrated and seen in countless occasions that the forwards, wingers and midfielders were stagnated while the US had possessions, but there was simply no outlets. Sooner or later, we turned the all over cheaply, and our opponents countered.
The lack of movement has been startling to me. It’s alarming and there is no way you can mount any sort of decent attack if you aren’t moving. It’s very very easy to defend.
Hoping he sees some time tomorrow in champions League play. The kid has enormous potential.
The best scenario will be anther late cameo off the bench. Frank Lampard intentionally took Mason Mount out and brought in Pulisic off the bench at the 60th minute on Saturday to rest his favorite boy, Mount for Wednesday’s Champions League date with Ajax.
Unless we see him actually get more playing time… this is just talk and doesn’t mean much.
Chelsea tied for 3rd. Regardless of our feelings about CPs playing time, Lampard is doing something right with a very young team.
Lil’ Bobby must have lost his phone privileges for the week. He can’t stand the sight of anything slightly positive about CP22 being posted anywhere on the internet…