'Can also be an option from there': Thomas Tuchel suggests a positional change for one Chelsea forward
Thomas Tuchel explained that Christian Pulisic could feature in all manner of roles for Chelsea if required.
Speaking to CBS Sports Golazo, Tuchel relayed the variety of positions he believed Pulisic would be able to feature in, including wing-back.
The 23-year-old may even play in goal at this rate, just to get some more minutes under his belt.
He hasn’t started a club match since the Premier League’s opening weekend way back in August.
A combination of contracting covid and sustaining an ankle injury kept the American side-lined for nearly three months.
Pulisic made his return at the beginning of the month away to Malmo in the Champions League.
Since then, he’s made a further four substitute appearances for Chelsea and the United States.
He did score after coming off the bench in his last domestic outing, the 3-0 league win away to Leicester City.
Positional change for Pulisic?
Reintegrating the attacker has to be a gradual process, to avoid any more physical damages.
Yet, due to his apparent versatility, the transition process might be smoother than first anticipated.
“Yeah, well, in our system, we have like this naturally three offensive positions,” said Tuchel.
“For me he (Pulisic) can play in any positions of these three. He can play in the middle as a number nine.
“He can play as a double striker and he can play as a half winger left side, right side.
“He had fantastic matches in Dortmund as a wing-back, so he can also be an option from there if we need to be more offensive.
“We are happy to have him. He has a certain quality, attitude and spirit that helps us and helps any team in the world.
“Happy that he is back. He waited for a long time and very happy he was decisive in his first match.”
Caution to the wing-back
Talk of being deployed at wing-back may send shivers down Pulisic’s spine.
Asking a forward to take on even more defensive duties is like asking the Easter Bunny to take over from Santa Claus across Christmas; the request might be met with hesitation.
After all, he will have used Callum Hudson-Odoi’s improved performances after moving from wing-back to a more offensive position as evidence against such a case.
However, the USMNT international really cannot be picky about earning game time.
With Romelu Lukaku’s return seemingly only around the corner, the spaces in the front three are shrinking by the day.
Who knows, Pulisic could become the next best wing-back in the land…