Christian Pulisic

Christian Pulisic – the American wonder-kid who is better than Landon Donavan

Spotting the number 10 jersey, he looks so harmless as he jogs across the pitch in his training bib – but then the game begin, and he tears everyone apart! Enter Christian Pulisic, the new USMNT number 10 who is better than Landon Donovan.

Who is Christian Pulisic?

Christian Pulisic is a teenage American midfielder who plays football for German Bundesliga outfit, Borussia Dortmund and for the United States Men’s National Team (USMNT). Christian Pulisic came into limelight last year when he made a senior appearance for Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga aged just 17.

Pulisic moved to Germany aged just 15 to join Dortmund – of course, his father; Mark Pulisic went with him to offer parental guidance. Since making his senior debut for Borussia Dortmund in January last year, Christian Pulisic has made his way to Thomas Tuchel’s first team at Dortmund.

This season, Christian Pulisic has been a joy to watch for both club and country. For Borussia Dortmund, Pulisic has scored or assisted 8 Bundesliga goals this season – we’re talking about an 18-year-old here. Pulisic has also been lighting it up in the Champions League this season. The young American has played 8 games so far and has scored once and assisted twice in the competition; helping Dortmund reach the Champions League quarter-finals.

Parallels between Christian Pulisic and Landon Donavan

One of the greatest soccer players ever to wear the jersey of the USMNT is Landon Donavan. The Ontario-born midfielder was a golden boy for the United States, winning the best young player award at 2002 FIFA World Cup. The list of Donavan’s achievements will be too long to squeeze into this article; however, I’m only trying to juxtapose between the American soccer hero and Christian Pulisic.

Landon Donavan moved to Germany as a teenager to play for Bundesliga side, Bayer Leverkusen in 1999. Christian Pulisic also left America for the Bundesliga as a teenager. However, unlike Pulisic, Donavan failed to cope with life in Germany and sought for a loan move away – he was allowed to return to the MLS. That move was later made permanent.

At the same age as Donavan, when he struggled to succeed in the German league, Pulisic has lit up the Bundesliga – he’s scored goals and has become a mainstay in the first team of a top Bundesliga side. Landon Donavan agrees Pulisic is already better than he was at the same age – Donavan was quoted by Yahoo Sports as saying:

“Christian is miles ahead of where I was at that age.”

“I think we have similar qualities when I watch him. But the difference for me is that mentally he’s been exposed to things that I hadn’t been exposed to yet at that age and it has clearly helped him. So I think the future for him is incredibly bright.”

Right from the horse’s mouth – Donavan has endorsed Christian Pulisic as his worthy heir. The youngster was full of gratitude for such kind words coming from his idol. He was quoted as saying:

“He [Donovan] was an idol of mine. It’s obviously an honour, but I’m my own player as well, so I’m just trying to do it for me.”

Christian Pulisic, already a star for the USMNT

Coach of the USMNT, Bruce Arena, rates Pulisic and has given him the opportunity to thrive in that number 10 role instead of playing him out wide as he’s used at Dortmund.

Christian Pulisic shone like a million stars for the USMNT in that number 10 position as the United States thrashed Honduras 6-nil in a thrilling encounter. Guess what? Pulisic scored one and assisted 3 goals in that game. Guys, please watch the highlight – you’ll fall in love.

Clint Dempsey who grabbed a hat-trick in that game, thanks to two assists from Pulisic was full of praise for the 18-year-old. He was quoted as saying:

"Christian I think is just a natural. The game’s easy for him. He’s got exceptional skill, vision, he’s pretty smooth.”

“Man, he’s a great player…” “He can beat people one-on-one on the dribble. He creates mismatches because of that. Someone else has to kind of push to him, and if you’re able to make good runs he’ll find you. It’s great to have players like that, that can win that one-v-one battle and break teams open.”

I couldn’t analyse Pulisic any better than Dempsey just did. The teenager has already pushed Landon Donovan to second place, in terms of soccer achievements at the same age. Pulisic performances scream – move over Donovan, it’s Christian Pulisic’s time now!

About the Author Kingsley

I am a football/soccer connoisseur who enjoys crafting interesting articles like the one you just read.

follow me on:

Leave a Comment: