Chelsea manager Frank Lampard hailed Christian Pulisic after his hat-trick performance against Burnley at Turf Moor.
The 21-year-old became only the second American footballer to score a Premier League hat-trick, the first being Clint Dempsey in 2012. This was the first hat-trick in the winger’s professional career so far. Pulisic’s hat-trick helped the Blues win 4-2 and move to fourth in the table with 20 points to their name, five behind leaders Liverpool. Following the match, Lampard hailed the youngster, calling his performance a match-winning one.
Speaking to Chelsea’s official website, the Blues manager said: “I’m absolutely delighted for him. There’s been a lot of talk around Christian because of the big price tag, the fact he’s a star in his country and captain of the USA national team. I know his back-story and the pressures of a move like that. I also know that he’s played for his country throughout the summer and only had one week’s break.
“I’ve tried to deal with it in the way I see best, which is to give him minutes. He has played games this season already but I’ve also got competition in that area and I need them all trying to perform when they get in the team. Christian has been doing that recently from the bench, he fully deserved his start today and it was a fantastic match-winning performance. I know what a good player he is because I see it close up every day.
“There are obviously things that he has to learn and improve because he’s just turned 21 and it’s the same as all the other young players, but he knows that and he knows I’m driving that daily in training.We need that from all our attacking players – to be a threat and play like that, have a ruthless edge about how they finish and he showed the full package.”
After netting a hat-trick, Pulisic has certainly made a strong case as to why he deserves a spot in Chelsea’s starting XI. Even though there is plenty of competition, the United States international could find several first-team opportunities.
The Blues’ next fixture is against Manchester United in the Carabao Cup before they take on Watford at Vicarage Road next weekend.