Christian Pulisic Makes Chelsea Debut, Draws Praise from Lampard


The day is finally here! Christian Pulisic has made his long awaited debut in a Chelsea shirt, coming on as a 65th-minute substitute in a 1-0 loss to Japanese champions Kawasaki Frontale in Yokohama, Japan. Pulisic didn’t have a huge impact on the game, which was a preseason friendly, but he did inspire a lot of praise from his manager Frank Lampard.

“He has only been here a couple of days really in terms of training, so I have been really impressed,” Lampard said of the €64 million ($73 million/£58 million) man, the most expensive American in football history.

“He’s comfortable on the ball and I think he should have had a penalty towards the end of the game.

“He wants to try to take people on – the sort of player the fans are going to like – so we have to give him a little bit of time to adapt slightly. But the way he has trained, and the way he has come in with his personality looks great, so I am really pleased to have him.”

The Blues have won just one of their three preseason fixtures thus far, with a meeting against La Liga champions FC Barcelona awaiting in four days.

Pulisic wore Gary Cahill’s old number, 24, for this match, but Chelsea have made it clear that regular season shirt numbers, for some players, could be different from those worn in preseason friendlies.

Either Pulisic or Callum Hudson-Odoi is likely to inherit Eden Hazard’s #10.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC and Chicago on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link.

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  1. […] saw the debut of Christian Pulisic in a Chelsea FC shirt, as he came on as a second half substitute during a friendly being played in Japan. It marked a massive moment for American soccer, as the most expensive American born player in […]

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