Christian Pulisic takes game to 'another level'

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has encouraged Christian Pulisic to be more decisive in front of goal for the Blues, and the 21-year-old young American has been that since the Premier League's restart.

Pulisic scored with a blistering left-footed to the near post to give Chelsea a 2-0 lead in the first half of its match at Crystal Palace. The Blues hung on -- barely -- for a 3-2 win that moved them into third place when Leicester City tied Arsenal, 1-1, later on Tuesday.

Pulisic has scored in three of the five Chelsea games since the restart -- four wins and one loss -- and he's also created three other goals when he was taken down for two penalty kicks scored by teammate Willian and for a foul that the Brazilian converted on a free kick.

"He's hugely important because he's got great talent," said Lampard. "We know that. Earlier on in the season, at the start, he came here, difficult conditions in terms of [he] hadn't really had a break early in the season, but he started to play really well for us, and now he's moved his game on another level, not just in how he's going by people but real end product. Look around at the top attacking players in the world, and they score goals regularly to win games, and at the moment, he's doing that, so I'm delighted with him."

Photo by John Patrick Fletcher/Actionplus/Icon Sportswire)

6 comments about "Christian Pulisic takes game to 'another level'".
  1. Ben Myers, July 8, 2020 at 10:32 a.m.

    Pulisic is the cornerstone of the USMNT, but his aggressive playing style can lend itself to injury.  Now all Berhalter needs are a couple of players who are really good touch passers to link up with Pulisic, and maybe Gio Reyna?  Put Sargent up top, and you have the makings of an explosive attack.  Bring in other players playing abroard, Berhalter!  Let's hope he is starting to get the message.

  2. Wooden Ships replied, July 8, 2020 at 10:41 a.m.

    Agreed Ben, but as a "corner stone" is still needs to play wide. Use him as Chelsea does. I also, wouldn't give him the Captains band. A little later in his career perhaps.

  3. frank schoon replied, July 8, 2020 at 12:47 p.m.

    You can tell Pulisic has been working on his left foot, shooting wise. He shot it with such authority, showing no body imbalance. By electing to receive the ball with his left foot instead of his right gave him a better angle with his body for the shot on goal as well as allowing one less touch on the ball. VERY EFFICIENT!  I like to see him cross the ball with his left and see what it looks like.

    What I like about this move is the change of pace on the ball. Note, the second touch with his right foot on the ball was a change of pace . In other words,  the first touch with the right foot was short, second touch was long. He beats the opponent quickly accelerating his run taking only two steps.It is a very simple but the defender is thrown off his timing for he is reacting to the first touch the short dribble and therefore miscalculate and is not ready for the second touch. The whole idea is not to outrun an opponent on speed, all you need to do is to throw the opponent off via timing and all you need for that is one step.

    Note the two touches with his right is done in an 'in' 'out' pattern, which is the best pattern to beat an opponent ,besides the change of pace.  Another way, of employing the 'in and out' pattern is to push the ball to his right 'long' forcing the defender to turn and take a step to his left to follow the ball which leaves him in a weaker position to turn to his right as soon as Pulisic cuts back short.

    As far as Pulisic playing together with Sargent, Sargent need to understand not to run and position towards Pulisic when he has the ball for it will only draw more opponents towards Pulisic, clogging things up. Sargent need to make contro-runs , away from Pulisic, to create more space in the middle for an uncoming midfielder to shoot...   

  4. Bob Ashpole replied, July 9, 2020 at 12:45 a.m.

    WS, my thoughts too. Although I think "a" cornerstone is more apt than "the" cornerstone. IMO the foundation of a team is the CMs. Weak CMs means weak foundation and a team suffers for it. What is really great about Pulisic is that he is effective on the left side where most coaches struggle with fewer choices.

  5. Ben Myers, July 8, 2020 at 12:45 p.m.

    Right.  Pulisic has to remain a wide player, the same sort of devastating threat as many other stellar wide players past and present, Hazard (the elder), Ronaldo, Salah, Aguero, Jesus, Robben and others.  Does Gio slide into the middle to distribute, as he has in linking up with Haland at Dortmund?  Gio is quick as a waterbug, but would probably benefit from being paired with a very solid and aggressive defensive midfielder.  And, NO!  Not Bradley!  Dest and possibly Yedlin as outside backs.  Starts to look interesting with all these young men playing abroad at the top level of club play.

    And yes, Pulisic can be the talisman, but not the captain.

  6. John Lyncheski, July 8, 2020 at 7:04 p.m.

    Christian is a joy to watch. He has no fear and will take on any defender. Creative as all get out and has incredible vision, anticipation and touch on his passes. His skill with the ball at his feet is outstanding. His recent shots on goal are well chosen and well struck. He is one of the best wing forwards in the Premier League and is fast becoming one of the best in any league. Renaldo, watch out! He’s nipping at your heels. Finally, there couldn’t 
     be a better ambassador for American “football”.

Next story loading loading..

Discover Our Publications