Date: 21st September 2022 at 12:45pm
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Chelsea winger Christian Pulisic has criticised former Blues manager Thomas Tuchel for not selecting him during The Blues’ Champions League semi-final second leg against Real Madrid back in 2021. 

The US national team captain is set to release a new book imminently, titled ‘Christian Pulisic: My journey so far’ and an excerpt published before the release reveals his fury at the decision.

As reported by ESPN, the 24-year-old says in the book that he was left ‘dumbfounded and very disappointed’ by Tuchel’s decision to leave him out of the starting XI for the game against Real, that Chelsea ultimately ended up winning 2-0 to secure their place in the final.

Pulisic had scored Chelsea’s goal during the first leg, which ended in a 1-1 draw, and claims he had been told he would start the second leg at Stamford Bridge.

“l’d had a really good first leg performance and our following match was against Fulham in the league,” he said.

“Tuchel told me that he was resting me for the second leg and as a result I didn’t play a single minute in the Fulham game.

“Then on match day of the second semi, Tuchel tells me he’s changed his mind and he’s going with Kai [Havertz]. I honestly was dumbfounded and very disappointed.

Pulisic has spoken of his discontent under previous manager Tuchel

“I thought that I’d earned a start and, most importantly, he had assured me previously I was going to start.”

The forward, who had also previously worked with Tuchel at former club Borussia Dortmund, also claims that his goal during the first leg came after he ignored Tuchel’s advice.

“As I take off on the run, I hear Thomas Tuchel yelling from the sideline, ‘Christian, stay in the pocket, don’t make the run!’ he explained.

“But I just had the feeling I’d find the space and get on the end of the pass, so I continued the run.”

During his time at Chelsea, Pulisic has largely failed to live up to the excitement and expectation that came with his arrival.

The US international made 34 appearances across all competitions during his first season in England in 2019/20, scoring 11 goals and providing ten assists.

Since then, both his playing time and his attacking output have decreased, though, so much so that last term the American was limited to just 13 Premier League starts.

Pulisic has also started just one of Chelsea’s eight matches so far this season, failing to register a single goal or assist.

The departure of Tuchel earlier this month also appears to have done very little to help Pulisic’s cause, as the winger was only used as a substitute during Graham Potter’s first game in charge.

The former Dortmund man has enjoyed success during his time in London, though, winning Champions League, UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup.

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