Christian Pulisic ‘excited’ with Chelsea return after ‘smart’ comeback from ankle injury
Christian Pulisic is ‘thrilled’ with his Chelsea return after ‘clever’ comeback from an ankle injury… with midfielder insisting he can play like a false nine after being deployed there by Thomas Tuchel in the demolition of Juventus
- Christian Pulisic played 72 minutes for Chelsea in their beating of Juventus
- It was the 23-year-old American’s first start for the Blues since mid-August
- He insisted that his comeback was not rushed, which allowed him to work his way back
- Pulisic insists he’s happy to play as the false nine if Thomas Tuchel wants it
Christian Pulisic admits he was ‘excited’ to return to Chelsea’s basics in their 4-0 win over Juventus, and believes he has been rewarded for not rushing his comeback from injury.
Pulisic played 72 minutes for the Blues against the Serie A giants as they ensure their defense of their European crown will go into 2022 after finishing their progression to the last 16 of the Champions League on Tuesday night.
It was the first time the 23-year-old – who came off the bench last weekend to score in the Blues’ 3-0 win over Leicester – had been named in Thomas Tuchel’s squad since their first league game of the season against Crystal Palace, a match in which he also scored.
Christian Pulisic was ‘excited’ to return to Chelsea base in their win against Juventus
Pulisic was in the starting line-up against Crystal Palace for the first time since mid-August
Pulisic then missed the next two months of action with an ankle injury, but believes his ‘clever’ methods have seen him find his way back into the German boss’s plans in recent weeks.
“It’s been a long few months,” the 23-year-old said after the Blues’ win at Stamford Bridge. “It’s hard not being able to play and do what I love and help my team.
“I’m really happy to be back and it’s great to be back in the team. I would say, in terms of fitness, I’m close to where I want to be, but I can still improve and that comes in minutes.
The 23-year-old missed two months after an ankle injury sustained during his international service
“I played it very cleverly in how I came back with not too much too soon. It’s been really good and I’m happy with how I feel now.’
Pulisic finally made his comeback from injury early this month with cameos against Malmö and Burnley before scoring at King Power Stadium on Saturday.
However, on his first start since mid-August, US international Pulisic was deployed in an unknown role as he took the lead as the false nine against Massimiliano Allegri’s men.
After cameos against Malmo and Burnley, he came off the bench to score against Leicester
Tuchel was unwilling to risk Romelu Lukaku – who was an unused substitute who himself just came back from an ankle problem – but Pulisic insists it is a role he will be ‘lucky’ to fill in the future.
On how he adapted to his new position, Pulisic added: “As for the false nine roll, I think I can play in many of the attacking positions within this team.
“I was in a slightly different role. I’m not as much on the ball as I usually am or able to use some of my strengths, but I think it’s a position I can play.
“I can create a lot of space for my teammates and that’s where I like to play.”
Pulisic insists he’s happy to play as a false nine, as he did against Leonardo Bonucci and Co