On the day that more nonsense made the media rounds about Frank Lampard’s supposed anti-American bias, Christian “Captain America” Pulisic was proud of that most un-American thing of all, a draw. Sorry, a tie. In football. Sorry, soccer. Taxation without representation!
Speaking to Chelsea TV after the match, the young winger — and yet still the oldest at 22 in the attacking band of three next to Kai Havertz and Mason Mount, both 21 — tried to put a positive spin on the first scoreless draw of the Frank Lampard era (and our fourth draw in the last five games).
“It was definitely a tough game [...] not a lot of chances; a really hard-fought match. We did a lot of good defending. I think we can walk away proud with a point.
“They’re a strong team and they definitely put us to the test. They move the ball really well and we defended a lot today.
“We’re going to continue to work to improve as a team. [...] It’s everyone’s job to be behind the ball at times and [the forwards] have to help out defensively. It will give us some confidence going forward, to come away with a clean sheet, so it’s not all bad.”
One gets the feeling that after the calamities of Saturday, a great emphasis was placed on solid defending, especially given the strength of the opposition. Mission accomplished in that regard. Now we have to find the balance to do so without stunting the attack completely.
“Of course that’s the goal, to find the balance. Obviously, we want to create more chances and I want to help with that, but we have to find a way to do both.”
-Christian Pulisic; source: Chelsea TV
Next up is a massive test at Old Trafford against a Manchester United side who pulled off an excellent 2-1 win over PSG in Paris on Tuesday. After a grueling 90 minutes, Chelsea have just a few days to rest and recover and go again. A similar defensive effort would be welcome, though maybe with a few more chances created against a defense who’ve actually given up more goals than Chelsea in fewer games (though four of those dozen came with ten men against Spurs).