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Sir

Official: Chelsea Sign Christian Pulisic

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Sir   

Why are some seemingly so harsh on Pedro and Willian? I mean when you look at the transfer fees for them both I think they’ve both proven to be pretty good purchases for the club since they have both been here? Not every player is going to be smashing them in at the rate of Messi or Ronaldo. Sure, we’d like them to produce more, or, have better quality and consistent players in those positions, but that’s easier said than done. And when these two players are injured, do we have the utmost in similar quality to come in and replace them in their positions? Not particularly.

And anyway, looks like the club is looking to the future anyway in regards to these positions. Still thinking finding a top quality striker or two is what we ought to be focussing on, but again, easier said than done.

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15 minutes ago, Martin1905 said:

Quite right, his signing will have no negative impact on Hazard, if anything, along with signing Kepa, Jorginho and hopefully Kovacic, extending the contracts of Azpilicueta,  Kante and Alonso it shows how ambitious we are and hopefully he will want to be part of it.

I saw a post yesterday from an ex team mate of his that was along the lines of "congratulations you're going to play with Hazard" let's hope it's true the pair of them hopefully backed by CHO and Pedro or Willian will be electric.

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4 hours ago, Holymoly said:

Doesn't sound like he's considered a shoo in for the first team if he's being loaned out until next season. As such if Hazard remains then I see him becoming another Salah or deBruyne and eventually being shifted on in due course to the benefit of other clubs. A lot of money for a "possibly maybe". I'd prefer to see us paying for a striker we can make use of this season.

Or it could be that Dortmund accepted our offer now (rather than being in a potential bidding war in the summer), on the proviso that he see out the season with them.

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This is a fantastic signing.  Pulisic is good enough to walk into our team now, and he is only going to get better.  He is an extremely direct player who wants to run at opposition fullbacks.  Likes to play on the right side and through the middle.  Intelligent presser who is sneakily quick.  He is going to fit perfectly into Sarri's system.  For those worried about a lack of goal return.  in 2017 with the US national team he had 6 goals in 9 games.  Those were during world cup qualifying so he clearly shows up when called upon.  (the US didn't qualify for other reasons not him).  For those saying he isn't even a nailed on starter at Dortmund.  He actually got hurt in August which allowed Sancho the game time to show his stuff.  Now that he is back he is starting more than Sancho is.  11 starts and 7 sub appearances for Pulisic who has missed about a month I believe and 13 starts and 11 sub appearances for Sancho.  Pulisic is going to be a key player for us for years to come.  Everyone should be over the moon with this signing

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1 hour ago, Sir said:

Why are some seemingly so harsh on Pedro and Willian? I mean when you look at the transfer fees for them both I think they’ve both proven to be pretty good purchases for the club since they have both been here? Not every player is going to be smashing them in at the rate of Messi or Ronaldo. Sure, we’d like them to produce more, or, have better quality and consistent players in those positions, but that’s easier said than done. And when these two players are injured, do we have the utmost in similar quality to come in and replace them in their positions? Not particularly.

And anyway, looks like the club is looking to the future anyway in regards to these positions. Still thinking finding a top quality striker or two is what we ought to be focussing on, but again, easier said than done.

Have you seen Willian’s stat? He has 2 goals in like 20 league games. I respect him for what he did and I appreciate what he brings to the team. But he shouldn’t be starting as attacker anymore.If we are ok with him as a first choice attacker then we have set the bar real low.

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Welcome to the club Pulisic. 

From what I've seen of him he's a trickster that lacks the final product. Hopefully he'll fulfill his promise with us and that this does not spell the end of Hazard or CHO at Chelsea. 

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xCELERYx   

Was paroosing Reddit the other day and came across the below. Thought it would be worth sharing for others given he's now signed for us. Gives a solid overall insight on what type of player Pulisic is and what we can possibly expect next season through the eyes of a Dortmund supporter. Bit of a read but certainly worth it.

 

Quote

Every thread pertaining to Christian Pulisic seems to host two extreme opinions. Were you to listen to his fans, he's the next big thing, on course to being some American Pele. Were you to heed his detractors, you would write him off as a US market sell-shirt, a 2019 Freddy Adu. So what is really the truth of it? As with most things, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. Let's separate the fact from fiction.


First a tl:dr for Chelsea fans. Chelsea fans should not expect him to be an immediate solution to their problems.
Christian Pulisic vs Willian 18/19, Christian Pulisic vs Pedro 18/19
Or to in any way compensate for a potential loss of Hazard. Christian Pulisic vs Eden Hazard 18/19
There's good reason he's taken back seat to Sancho this season. Christian Pulisic vs Jadon Sancho 18/19
There. You can stop coming to r/borussiadortmund "in peace," to ask about Pulisic.

Christian Pulisic, TRUE or FALSE?

  • Pulisic creates lots of chances that are squandered by teammates. FALSE.

Over the length of his Dortmund career, Christian Pulisic has a higher A/90 than xA/90 indicating his teammates more or less finish what they should be expected to. On the other hand, Pulisic has a lower G/90 than xG/90 indicating Pulisic squanders more scoring chances than he should. It's patently false that his teammates have made Pulisic look bad.
 

  • Pulisic was one of our best players last season. FALSE.

Shinji Kagawa, Andriy Yarmolenko, Jadon Sancho, Marco Reus and Maximilian Philipp were all superior performers in the second line behind Aubameyang/Batshuayi. Pulisic was marginally better than Andre Schurrle, but given how pitiable Schurrle's season was, that's not saying much.
 

  • Pulisic has been Dortmund's key attacking player the past few seasons. FALSE.

In 15/16 the key attacking players were the so-dubbed "fantastic four" quadrumvirate of Aubameyang, Mkhitaryan, Reus and Kagawa. In 16/17 it was Aubameyang, Dembele, Reus and Kagawa. In 17/18 the key attacking players were Kagawa, Aubameyang, Yarmolenko, Philipp in the first half, Kagawa, Batshuayi, Reus, Sancho in the second half. In 18/19 our key attacking players are Paco, Reus, Sancho, Hakimi. Pulisic has never been a player the system revolved around, which is why you don't see Dortmund fans panicking and distraught at the idea of losing Pulisic like we were about losing Kagawa, Gotze, Mkhitaryan, Dembele etc. Pulisic has his strengths and uses, but he has always been a plus alpha. A force multiplier. We've never been reliant on him.
 

  • Pulisic is one of Dortmund's best young players. TRUE

We have a lot of good young players who have played for the first team. In 15/16 he was vastly superior to Adnan Januzaj who was returned to sender before his loan period was up. In 16/17, Pulisic was great. His performance was overshadowed by Dembele's insane season that got him poached by Barcelona, but Pulisic along with Weigl earned a place with the first team, while we let go of Mor and Merino, and Passlack was loaned out. In 17/18 he had his struggles, but still did better than Toljan and Isak, though Sancho stole the show after being integrated into the first team. In 18/19, he's fallen behind Sancho and Hakimi, but is still far ahead of Gomez and Isak. He's racked up over 100 appearances for Dortmund as a U21. That speaks to his high quality for his age.

 

  • Pulisic was so good he was a first choice starter for Dortmund. FALSE.

Pulisic did in fact, start the majority of games last season. But let's put that situation into context. Pulisic started the majority of games last season because we suffered a severe injury crisis. Marco Reus began the season in the physio room, and did not make his comeback until half the season had already gone. Maximillian Philipp, Andriy Yarmolenko, Raphael Guerreiro, Shinji Kagawa all lost several months to injury. Peter Bosz preferred not to take chances on a then unknown quantity in Jadon Sancho, who only really got his first team shot after Bosz was sacked. Christian Pulisic started the majority of games by virtue of being our one and only winger who did not have a major injury all season. This season, with Sancho, Bruun-Larsen and Guerreiro available, Pulisic has seen his minutes drastically reduced. That despite Reus shifting central at Kagawa's expense, Gotze converting to centerforward, Wolf suffering an injury, and Philipp in terrible form. Truth be told, Pulisic has never been first choice in any of his seasons here. In 15/16 he was wholly peripheral, in 16/17 he was behind Dembele, in 17/18 every other winger was long term injured, and in 18/19 he is competing for 3rd choice. Despite starting as many games as he did last season, in r/borussiadortmund post-season polling for 17/18, Pulisic came up 9th in player ratings (6.73/10), and collected just 1.5% of the POTS vote.
 

  • Pulisic's struggles were caused by being played as a wingback. FALSE.

When Pulisic played wide of midfield in a 343, he still played as a winger, with the right CB or one of the defensive midfield covering the rightback area. It was more of a patchwork solution to fit both Dembele and Pulisic on the pitch at the same time. Pulisic hardly played defensively in those games, which were few and far between in any case.
 

  • Pulisic is not that good and is only overhyped because he is American. FALSE

Although circumstances played to his favor, he did not rack up 115 appearances 6,800 minutes with Dortmund's first team, or 14 goals and 24 assists by age 20 by being utter wank. He is undoubtedly a good player with a lot going for him. He has a bright future ahead of him, and could very well go on to be the best American field player since Clint Dempsey. Though he was overshadowed by Dembele in 16/17, he did in fact have a good season and was a very promising teenager at the time.


So exactly what kind of player is Pulisic?

  1. Pulisic is a winger. He has pace on and off the ball, a fantastic short sprint and a good long sprint. He can take a counter from the edge of our box well into the final third, and keep doing it for 80 minutes. When he is switched on, he will put in a decent defense effort. Contrary to his NT situation, he has been far better wide than central for Dortmund, better on the right than the left. USNT fans argue he should be a "10" but I disagree. Perhaps his long term future lies there, but at present he lacks the goal threat to be a forward type 10 like a Reus or Griezmann, and lacks the decision making and tight space technique to be midfield type 10 like a Kagawa, James or Modric. At the moment at least, he's a winger.
     

  2. He is a decent dribbler. While he is no slouch on the technical side of things, he's better at kick and rush style long distance dribbling than tight dribbling. He isn't a close dribbler like Kagawa, who can draw 3-4 players to himself on the ball and wiggle away with one deft turn. He isn't a power dribbler like Reus, who will force his way through a pair of defenders and stay on his feet. But if you punt the ball in front of him and make him contest a SB he'll often kick and go past the defender as if he weren't there. He's far better dribbling at pace than dribbling from a dead start. He loves to take on players, sometimes a bit too much, and can be single minded about it. When well matched he's on song, a hot knife through butter. When outclassed he's a deadend repeatedly smashing himself against the same brick wall.
     

  3. He is better at creating chances than finishing them. He has a good eye for a defense splitting pass, though his execution is not at the level of a Reus, Sancho or Kagawa. If his final ball improves, he could be far more lethal than he currently is. Quite often he'll spot a good pass or cross, but overcook it, leave it short or time it wrong. He often has the right idea, but the wrong execution.
     

  4. His off the ball movement is better in support than spearheading attack. In a group counter situation, more often than not his off the ball runs are intelligent, and can prove highly distracting to defenses. He will get into a good position to be a finishing option at a decent frequency. On the other hand, he could improve on his off the ball runs when the ball is still in midfield. He doesn't make penetrating runs behind often enough, which is a shame because once he's gotten loose is when he's at his best.
     

  5. Pulisic is chaos. While Pulisic himself may not score a lot of goals, or assist that many, he does bring a certain tactical value. His relentless attempts may fail more often than not, but he poses a threat that must be contained. That isn't exactly the hardest thing to do, but it does create gaps for other players to exploit. This means he's ineffective when playing with players who themselves pose little threat, but makes life significantly easier for players who do. The fact that he never slows down and always keeps the attacking tempo high, wears down defenses over time.
     

  6. No, he is not two-footed or ambidextrous. His left peg isn't non-existent like some players, but he is in fact very much right footed. Any claims to the contrary are flat out false.
     

  7. Defender he ain't. While Pulisic never comes up short on hustle, he isn't a good defensive winger. His defensive positioning isn't great and that paired with his penchant to dribble into walls and lose possession does put some measure of strain on his partnering sideback. He isn't lazy though, and will put in a shift.
     

  8. Physically, he is in fantastic shape. A right proper athlete who looks after himself well. Never has weight issues, hasn't put on negative muscle, and has thus far avoided major injury. He rarely takes ill either. Good stamina and general fitness.
     

  9. He has a fantastic attitude about the game. Dembele and Mor, arguably Januzaj too were more naturally talented than Pulisic, but had attitude issues that kept them from being all they could be. Pulisic is a head down, chin up kind of guy. He is focused on football and not easily distracted from it, avoiding most of the pitfalls early hype can bring. The one patch where he was very distracted, was after the USA failed to qualify for the World Cup. That hit him hard, as he himself attested to. He has a fantastic in game attitude as well. He does get frustrated and work himself into a rut sometimes, but you'll never see him not trying or not caring. He has a tendency to rise to the occasion, and some of his best shifts have come against bigger opponents, though he has never done memorably well in a derby for some reason.
     
    16/17 he was good. Last season he was wank, and this season he is peripheral to Sancho. But it's ridiculous to think he's hit his ceiling and this is as good as he will ever be. He is still a U21 mid development, and has the physical, technical, and most importantly the mental attributes to be a very good player. He has admittedly stalled a bit the past season and half, but perhaps a change of scenery, competition, tactics is needed to take him to the next level. Personally, I don't expect him to become an era defining player over the next year or so, but I don't believe he'll be a flash in the pan forgotten by 25 either. No, he won't be Ronaldo or Messi, and probably not Hazard or Reus either. But he might be a Son or Shaqiri level player in a few years. He will have a solid career, here or elsewhere.


EDIT: Thank you to the anonymous gilders.

EDIT2: Some people seem to see this more negatively than I intended. That he is overhyped is true. People make over the top and factually untrue evaluations of his performance all the time. That doesn't however mean, that he is not deserving of hype. He may not be Dortmund's "talisman" (let's be honest, that's Reus) and whatnot, but that doesn't mean he isn't a very promising 20 year old with oodles of potential. The hype may be false when it claims he has carried the team the past few years, but that doesn't mean he hasn't contributed a fair share more than you'd expect from most teenagers. As I said, the truth is always somewhere in the middle. He's a good player. You don't make over 100 appearances for Dortmund as a U21 without being pretty damn good. The last player to do that before Pulisic, was Mario Gotze.

EDIT3: I see some comparisons to Willian in the comments. I'd say he's got similarities. Also reminds me of a young Taison. Doesn't have as much punch behind his shots, but looks similarly unstoppable when dribbling at pace. When he has the momentum going he just glides past players. It's when he's forced to stop where he second guesses. He isn't as good at sending players the wrong way from a dead stop or slow trot compared to the more technical dribblers we have, but he does have solid fundamentals, good technique and low center of gravity. He's not a brute pace merchant by any means, just not as much of a flair trickster.

 

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bONes   

Signing US player to increase our US market presence and commercial value and eventually sell the club to US owners?

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6 minutes ago, bONes said:

Signing US player to increase our US market presence and commercial value and eventually sell the club to US owners?

Personally the way he's being treated by the UK government It wouldn't surprise me. 

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There is clearly a large commercial element to this signing, if you look at it on a purely sporting basis £58m is a silly fee for a 20 year old who is not first choice at their club, will only have 12months left on their contract once signed, and while having a number of appearances hasn't set the world alight and appears to have a limited skill set. This is, understandably, frustrating for fans for a number of reasons. 

1. Given Sarri's comments last night it is pretty clear that transfer decisions are being made by a board made up of business people rather than football people. Some of these decisions being made for commercial reasons rather than sporting reasons. 2. We could really do with that money being spent on that position for somebody to contribute now, is there any money left in the pot for such a signing 3. Another attacking player with limited output 4. We are buying a player with potential while not utilizing players of great potential from our Academy.

Having read various reports from people who clearly watch him on a regular basis I am still left unimpressed and claims that, 'he will only get better' are just hopeful rather than anything else. A kick and rush footballer does not sound well suited to Sarri ball. It is no secret we have made a massive attack on the US market in the past decade and this seems tome to be the reason behind this transfer. Maybe that will be great for the long term future of the club (I'm sure it will be) but I really hope we aren't putting all our eggs in one basket because if we don't make any other signings at AM and as a result miss out on CL income for a year or two that will ultimately undo any commercial benefit form the signing.

Will reserve full judgement until I see what other signings we make, if we have spent all our money on Jorginho, Kepa and Pulisic it will be quite disappointing.

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