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Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie credit Serie A for respective growths in Italy

Both Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie have enjoyed productive seasons in Serie A this season and have credited the league as a whole for helping them develop at club level.

Pulisic and McKennie are heading into the final weeks of the Serie A season, starting with Saturday’s Serie A clash against one another. AC Milan visits Juventus in the headlining match in Italy’s top-flight, with both teams seeking a statement win against one another.

The 25-year-old Pulisic made the move to Serie A last summer and has been one of the Rossoneri’s best players throughout the whole of the season. His 13 goals and eight assists have made him one of the most productive players in Stefano Pioli’s squad, showing the freedom that Pulisic has been given since his move from Chelsea.

Heading into his final matches of the 2023-24 campaign, Pulisic credited Serie A and AC Milan for helping him get back to his best.

“I’ve actually been surprised with how difficult a lot of the games are in this league,” Pulisic said in an interview with ESPN’s Futbol Americas. “I think it’s been a great test for me.”

“I think a lot of that comes down to just being given the opportunities here,” he added. “I’ve had a lot of time on the field to show what I can do and have been given a creative role and a lot of freedom as well at times, which has been a huge part of getting that self-belief back and growing that confidence.”

After spending most of last season on loan at Leeds United, McKennie has delivered a bounce-back campaign with Juventus. Massimiliano Allegri has used McKennie’s versatility as both a midfielder and wing back at times, watching as the American star has totaled 10 assists across all competitions.

The 24-year-old recently helped Juventus clinch a spot in May’s Coppa Italia Final after eliminating Lazio 3-2 on aggregate on Tuesday night. Previously linked with a transfer away from Turin, McKennie has responded in a major way for the Old Lady, who are closing in on a top-four Serie A finish, a spot in next season’s UEFA Champions League, and potentially a trophy lift by May’s end.

“[Serie A] really helped me grow from more of a tactical standpoint and positional standpoint as well,” McKennie said on the program. “I was in Germany before and I was the workhorse still. I was running everywhere and trying to get into everything and maybe running 60 yards when I only needed to run 20 and get the same job done.

“So I think that Italy definitely helped me out that way, because this is a very tactical league, very defensive league as well. So for me, it helped me out a lot,” he added.

Saturday’s showdown will mark the second Pulisic-McKennie duel this season after AC Milan earned a 1-0 league win over Juventus last October.


  1. It is safe to say both Musah and Weah realized growth as well in Serie A this season. It isn’t always about being on the roster of a top-flight team or top league, but being in a situation where you are valued and games are competitive. I’m sure many current Chelsea players are now envious of Pulisic’s transfer.

  2. That didn’t “grow” as much as they moved to a much weaker league to play agains much weaker players.
    That’s where 90 percent of their growth comes from.

  3. Apparently it was a video call with a pool of American reporters?

    How nice that both Pulisic and McKennie have finally at least found playing time, if not quite star status, in Serie A. Even better that now Weah, Musah, and others will have the chance to follow; though even sadder that the Juve-Milan game on Saturday won’t be available to many US viewers, as like so much else, it’s relegated to streaming only. How much better if in decades to come, even more American players were more welcome all across Europe, and their games were more widely available to more US viewers of all classes and ages.

    Pulisic, McKennie, Reyna, Richards, Adams, and others must be all too aware that their own ups and downs, and those of the US broadcast media, represent an entire generation, and untold young players to come.

    Best of luck to them all, and *knock wood* no more injuries anytime soon — even on US bad “grass” this summer.



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