Liverpool hero Jamie Carragher has singled out which Chelsea star should be one of the first names on the team sheet under Thomas Tuchel. The Blues were in action on Tuesday evening, and they established control in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 clash with Lille.
As Romelu Lukaku dropped to the bench, Kai Havertz did not take long to justify Tuchel’s selection choice, heading home from a corner within 10 minutes.
The German’s best moment in a Chelsea shirt came in last season’s Champions League final when he scored the winner against Manchester City, and he built on it with another strong display against the French outfit.
Christian Pulisic grabbed the hosts’ second goal, taking the ball in full flight before intelligently lifting it over the onrushing goalkeeper.
That left Chelsea in the driving seat with a return leg in France to come, and Carragher delved into some Pulisic talking points after the final whistle.
“I think he should be almost a certain starter in that position behind the main striker.”
Indeed, Chelsea may be in need of that extra goal threat, with Lukaku struggling up top since issuing an apology to fans after a controversial interview with Sky Italia.
The Belgian has been unable to discover the kind of form that prompted the Blues to shell out £98million for him in the summer, having just lashed in 24 Serie A goals for Inter Milan en route to a league title.
If he embarks on a consistent run of fitness, Pulisic could be the man to carry the additional attacking burden for Tuchel.
Having notched 11 goals in his debut season after signing from Borussia Dortmund in 2019, the young American has only managed 10 in the 65 matches since.
He spent several weeks out with an ankle injury this campaign, but getting on the scoresheet against Lille could provide him with a much-needed boost – and it reinforces Carragher’s feeling that he must start for the Blues on a regular basis.
“He’s a big-game player and it is just about keeping him fit,” Micah Richards said of Pulisic when speaking to CBS Sports last year.
“The manager clearly trusts him and I think he can be as good as Eden Hazard, that’s how much I believe in his ability.”
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