Christian Pulisic Says His Chelsea Arrival Went Unnoticed


Chelsea star Christian Pulisic said barely anyone noticed when he first arrived at the club. Coming off an all-tournament team performance in the 2019 Gold Cup with the United States Men’s National team, Pulisic had barely any break at all this summer.

It was just a few days between his departing Chicago, where the USMNT lost to Mexico in the Gold Cup Final, to Japan where he joined the rest of his new team for their preseason exhibition tour. Traveling and arriving by himself, his first appearance had no fanfare.

“It was all pretty crazy what happened. I had to fly straight from my summer break right after the Gold Cup,” Pulisic said while appearing on the 13 & Me Podcast, hosted by former USMNT star Jermaine Jones.

“I had one week off and I didn’t really get a summer.”

“The team had already started preseason in Japan so I flew straight there and I had to literally fly by myself and then meet the team who had flown from London.”

“I had to go straight to the hotel and the next thing on the schedule was to go straight to training. I was tired, nervous and didn’t know what to think but: ‘I’m at Chelsea and this is insane.’ I got on the bus, they had just arrived as well.”

Chelsea paid more for Pulisic in January 2019 than any club has ever paid for any American ever. He didn’t exactly set the world on fire when the season began, but he impressed manager Frank Lampard, earned his place in the team, and was extremely productive and effective until suffering a nasty adductor injury on New Year’s Day.

He was out injured from that day on, but he’s full fitness now and ready to go if/when Project Restart gets going. The 21-year-old Pennsylvania native went on to further describe his very first impressions with the southwestern London club.

“Everyone is half asleep, I go and sit on the bus and nobody even noticed me. Nobody said anything. There were maybe one or two guys who said: ‘Hey, hello’ and I was like: ‘What’s going on here?’ Those first couple of days of training I was nervous,” he continued.

“You know how it’s like when you move to a new team.”

During the same appearance on the show, Pulisic also presented a special message of thanks to Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who provided him his first senior team appearance, anywhere in football, when both were at Borussia Dortmund.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly contributes to WGN TVSports IllustratedChicago Now and SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for Chicago Tribune.comon Twitter and his cat on Instagram.

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