Chelsea Star Christian Pulisic Doubtful for USA-Canada Match

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When the United States takes on Canada tonight in their second World Cup qualifier, they will possibly be without the services of the two players who suited up in the UEFA Champions League final in May.

USMNT Head Coach Gregg Berhalter says that Chelsea forward Christian Pulisic is a doubt for this important clash. He also revealed that Manchester City goalkeeper Zack Steffen in once again out of commission. Both missed the goalless draw with El Salvador on Thursday night.

“He’s made some progress and we have to see if it’s enough to actually include him in the game day squad and play,” Berhalter stated in regards to Pulisic during a media Zoom.

“We’ve been getting him up to speed with training. We’re trying to see what he can tolerate, and see what type of workloads he can do. And I think that’s the first step.

“To be out for 10 days and have COVID isn’t the easiest thing to get over, so for us it’s about really seeing how he can come back in a safe way. That’s the most important thing, and we’ve been having conversations and asking him about how he’s tolerating loads and everything, and we’ll see if he’s ready.”

Pulisic stayed behind in Nashville and worked on his fitness levels this past week after his having had to quarantine for 10 days.

Pulisic returned a positive test for covid-19, despite being fully vaccinated.

The Stars and Stripes really need him tonight, as their attack looked pretty toothless and the performance they provided in midweek was pretty drab overall. As for Steffen, his absence means another starting spot in between the sticks for Matt Turner.

“I think Matt performed really well in the in the game,” said Berhalter.

“I was most impressed I think with his calmness. It wasn’t an easy environment, but he really made everything look easy.

“I think there might have been one play in the first half of where the ball got away from him and went out for a corner kick. Other than that I think he was flawless; caught the balls, came out on crosses, his distribution was good.”

USA vs Canada World Cup Qualifying How to Watch

Kickoff: Sunday, Sept. 5, 8 pm ET
TV: FS1, UniMas (Spanish), TUDN (Spanish)

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune.

Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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