Christian Pulisic may have left USMNT camp on Wednesday to continue injury rehab, but if he’s fit, Tim Cahill has high expectations.
The former star Australian striker, who represented his country in four World Cups and spent eight years in the Premier League, says Pulisic can dominate at Qatar 2022 if he’s fit:
“He can play a massive part for America in the World Cup, and I think that if he's fit, he will set the World Cup alight.”
Here are Cahill’s full remarks, courtesy of Qatar’s Road to 2022 channel:
— Road to 2022 (@roadto2022en) November 10, 2020
Pulisic menaced Chelsea opponents all summer after the Premier League’s return, and was nominated for the league’s Young Player of the Season award. He’s been hampered by injuries thus far this season, missing the first three weeks of the new season after hurting his hamstring in August’s FA Cup final and then suffering another hamstring injury warming up for a match at Burnley on Halloween.
Given the coveted No. 10 shirt at Chelsea this season, Pulisic is primed to play an integral role if he can stay healthy. Cahill says that after an adjustment period in the Premier League, Pulisic began to emerge:
Towards the back end of last year, Christian Pulisic was pretty much unplayable. When he receives the ball in the pocket behind the defensive midfield, when he turns and faces forward, it’s the change of pace, it’s how electric he is on the ball.
The USMNT will face Wales in a friendly on Thursday in Swansea, and then Panama in another friendly on Monday in Austria. The Yanks haven’t played since beating Costa Rica in a friendly on Feb. 1 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The 22-year-old Pulisic is the headliner of an unprecedentedly deep American player pool, and part of the reason there’s so much optimism around the program right now. The end goal, of course, is returning to the World Cup in two years after the embarrassment of missing out on Russia 2018.
Pulisic figures to play a big part in that qualifying push. And if he and the USMNT get there, Cahill could be proven right.
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