Christian Pulisic has had to watch on from the sidelines during the last week because of his injury problem, but it’s been a brilliant one in terms of his own individual inspirations.
Of course, the attacker will have been happy to watch his side beat Aston Villa 3-0 last weekend in the Premier League. In addition, they edged past Zenit St Petersburg 1-0 on Tuesday in the Champions League group stages.
The 22-year-old American hasn’t played a minute in either fixture due to the ankle injury he sustained in the most recent international break. Blues manager Thomas Tuchel diagnosed a 10 day injury layout on 10 September, which would rule him out of this weekend’s league clash against Tottenham.
Despite Chelsea winning back-to-back games since returning to action, it feels like they are still trying to find the right formula in attack.
In-form striker Romelu Lukaku has scored three of the four goals in matches against Villa and Zenit, plus midfielder Mateo Kovacic chipped in with a rare goal.
But, perhaps the two attacking spots that play just behind Lukaku are currently up for grabs.
Hakim Ziyech, Mason Mount and Kai Havertz have all played good minutes in the last week. However, none of them have really delivered standout performances to suggest they should be nailed on in the XI. Meanwhile, Timo Werner hasn’t even had a look-in with any action.
There is too much quality within the squad for these attackers not to hit top form throughout the campaign, but it feels like a small window is open for Pulisic.
If you’re an attacker in the Chelsea squad this season, you’ve got to perform well when given the chance due to the sheer quality competition.
Door is open for Christian Pulisic
Pulisic, who earns £150,000-a-week, will be missing this weekend against Spurs unless Tuchel provides a fresh update in Friday’s press conference.
It sounds like his comeback may be soon afterwards, so he needs to be ready to impress from the get-go.
It’s likely there will be all sorts of different combinations in the Chelsea attack this season, with Lukaku the one ever-present as the focal point.
Pulisic has the individual quality to shine in the inverted winger position behind Lukaku and he must be pleased that none of his teammates have gone shooting past him while he’s been injured.
This is a squad game, but each player has their own individual ambitions.
The American speedster could do with recapturing the kind of form at the back end of the 2019/20 Premier League season when he returned from an injury at the time.
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