Chelsea’s switch in form in the Champions League group stages this season has been quite remarkable.
After starting their European campaign on a low with a shocking loss to Dinamo Zagreb, the Blues have rallied back under Graham Potter.
Despite having no experience managing a Champions League club or even attending the competition’s games before taking over the London giants, the Englishman has adapted to it really well.
Chelsea have won all four of their Champions League matches under the new manager, that too in utterly convincing fashion.
They’ve easily defeated Serie A champions AC Milan (with little help from ex-player Fikayo Tomori) and managed to defeat RB Salzburg once as well.
In doing so, Chelsea have won their group with one game still to play against the only team to defeat them in Europe this season.
While there is still some debate over the quality of football in Potter’s system – with the gaffer still experimenting with different systems and formations – Chelsea have at least remained unbeaten under him.
Some players have also shown a significant improvement in form under him from how they played during Thomas Tuchel’s time.
One player that looks to be slowly, but surely improving under Potter is winger Christian Pulisic.
The American star, who recently voiced a desire to have his ‘Captain America’ nickname replaced, has shown promise in a freer and more advanced attacking role in this new system.
The 24-year-old winger has scored 1 goal and provided 2 assists in 6 appearances under Potter – as compared to the zero goal involvements he had at the beginning of the season under Thomas Tuchel.
One of those assists came in the 2-1 win over Salzburg on Tuesday, where he also earned his first start in the Champions League this season.
Pulisic looked bright in the wings for Chelsea and even managed to grab the assist for Kai Havertz’s brilliant goal in the second half.
The German forward received the ball just outside the Salzburg box, managed to turn without any issue, and slot the ball into the top-left corner – leaving the goalkeeper rooted.
Havertz, to his credit, deserves most of the credit for scoring that goal with such a perfect shot.
His goal left ex-Arsenal striker Thierry Henry so impressed in the CBS Sports studios that he claimed that Pulisic’s assist ‘wasn’t an official assist as Kai Havertz did all the work’.
This has left some fans of Pulisic and the USA Men’s National team angry. They believe that it’s wrong of Henry to discredit the impressive work done by the winger to create the situation allowing Havertz to turn and score that wonder goal.
As can be noticed in the build-up of the goal, Pulisic makes a nice run through the right when he dribbles past a few players.
He also drags the attention of three defenders and pulls them toward him, allowing Havertz to get some free space just outside the box.
The USMNT fans have been quick to slam Henry for seemingly disrespecting their national team captain by trying to strip him of an official assist in the Champions League.
This isn’t the first time Henry has talked down the American captain as the former Arsenal man told Pulisic to ‘to bring something to the table’ in order to get game time at Chelsea earlier this month.
Henry was also critical of the FreePulisic hashtag that made waves on Twitter back in September.
USMNT fans would be hoping that Pulisic probably doesn’t pay much attention to it, as he looks to bring more consistency to his game and carve a permanent spot in Potter’s side.