It’s time for US fans to face the music – USMNT darling Christian Pulisic is underperforming for Chelsea.
Pulisic’s quality playing time under the recently fired Thomas Tuchel has sharply declined over the past year.
Captain America’s bench-warming sparked the #FreePulisic movement on Twitter, which was pretty well summarized by French legend Thierry Henry.
US fans might hate it, but Henry is right. Any unbiased Chelsea viewer can see that Pulisic has been out of form for months. As a USMNT fan, I’m thrilled every time I see him on the pitch. As a Chelsea fan, I wish he was stronger on the ball, more precise with his passes, and a lot more consistent with his goal-scoring.
Pulisic isn’t nearly as bad as his worst retractors will say he is, but he’s far from the form he was in two years ago.
This is by no means a trashing of CP10 – I’m far from burning his jersey. But US fans who can’t see that Pulisic is in a downswing are lying to themselves. Chelsea’s attacking players have all been awful this year – Pulisic has had more than enough opportunities to prove himself. Instead of being Chelsea’s savior, Pulisic has proven himself part of the problem.
There are plenty of stats on Twitter trying to soften the blows to Pulisic’s career. They’ll tell you that he created the most chances (an astounding 2) or had the most successful take-ons, all in another Chelsea loss where Cap didn’t find a single goal or assist. (Like the above stat where the Blues didn’t score until Pulisic was subbed off.) The eyes don’t lie – any non-US fan watching Chelsea right now is probably unimpressed by the American.
It’s hard to nail down what exactly is wrong with Pulisic’s current play. He doesn’t look confident on the ball, he’s knocked off the dribble too easily, he seems totally out of sync with his teammates, and he doesn’t finish enough opportunities… All in all, Pulisic doesn’t look like he’s quite ready for the competition in most of these games.
It hasn’t been all bad – he can still go on the occasional run and usually makes the safe play – but Pulisic isn’t showing that X factor that makes all goal scorers great, that X factor we’ve all seen him flash before. None of Chelsea’s attackers have it right now, but Our Boy doesn’t, either.
He’s still got it in there, somewhere.
Pulisic will have a chance to free himself under his new manager Graham Potter. He has more competition for playing time than ever, and perhaps the added pressure will make a gem out of Pulisic yet. But until he steps up for his club, it has to be said – Christian Pulisic gets the playing time he deserves at Chelsea.
Are we being to hard on Captain America? Sound off below!
Featured Image: Pexels/Serkan Gu00f6ktay/ChelseaFC/DM