Soccer

Christian Pulisic injury: Chelsea left sweating after forward suffers ankle injury on international duty

Christian Pulisic has not played for Chelsea since the opening day of the season

Chelsea face a nervous wait over the fitness of Christian Pulisic after the forward suffered an ankle injury while on international duty with the USA.

Pulisic was substituted shortly after the hour-mark of the his side’s victory over Honduras on Wednesday night, with the USA captain unable to continue having been on the receiving end of several heavy challenges in the World Cup qualifying fixture.

USA head coach Gregg Berhalter confirmed that Pulisic had sustained a knock to his ankle and the 22-year-old is set to undergo further assessment upon returning to Chelsea this week ahead of the Premier League fixture against Aston Villa on Saturday.

“Christian has a slight ankle injury,” Berhalter said. “We’re going to get more information on the severity of it when he goes back to London.”

Pulisic scored in Chelsea’s win over Crystal Palace on the opening weekend of the season but missed their next two fixtures after contracting Covid-19.

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The forward faces a competitive battle for a starting spot in Thomas Tuchel’s side following the arrival of Romelu Lukaku this summer, with Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Hakim Ziyech all vying for places alongside the Belgian and Mason Mount.

Lukaku is also an injury doubt for the visit of Villa after he picked up a thigh injury while on international duty. The striker is set to undergo a scan upon returning to Chelsea’s Cobham training base this week.

Tuchel’s side open their Champions League campaign with a home match against Zenit St Petersburg on Tuesday before facing Tottenham Hotspur in a London derby the following weekend.

The German manager is set to give an update on the fitness of his players at his pre-match press conference on Friday.

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