Christian Pulisic has entirely exceeded expectations following his transfer to Milan, something that’ll come as a blessing for the United States national team ahead of their home World Cup in 2026.

The 25-year-old American winger joined the Rossoneri from Chelsea last summer in a deal worth around €20m, a chance for him to relaunch his career after things took a downward turn in West London.

Pulisic immediately hit the ground running with Milan, scoring in his first two Serie A matches against Bologna and Torino, and he’s continued to maintain a high level across the campaign. His brief struggles with a thigh injury in late October and early November coincided with the club’s four game winless run.

The American forward has already proven himself to be one of the most electric wingers in the Italian topflight and his transfer to the Rossoneri has come at the perfect time for the USMNT, who are gearing up for one of the most important tournaments in their history.

Pulisic a star in stripes

Looking at the numbers, it’s obvious that Pulisic has had an incredible debut season with Milan so far, scoring 12 goals and providing eight assists in 2845 minutes of action across 40 matches.

Interestingly, the Rossoneri went on to win 11 of the 12 games that he scored in, only losing to Monza when he came off the bench in the 4-2 defeat in late February. Had he started in place of Samuel Chukwueze, things could’ve been entirely different.

[FBCharts] Christian Pulisic at Milan, 2023-24 Serie A season
Looking at Pulisic’s percentile rankings compared to his positional peers across Europe’s top five leagues this season, the 25-year-old immediately shines in a number of areas, impressing with his eye for goal, ability to lay off the right pass in an attack and his positional awareness.

The American winger has shined when bursting down the wing with the ball at his feet, winning 1.68 take-ons per 90 minutes on average and completing 4.40 progressive carries per 90. He receives 10.17 progressive passes per 90, showing his ability to consistently get on the end of attacking moves.

His fairly low number of average shots per 90 of 2.18 also highlights how Pulisic doesn’t let greed get in the way in decisive moments, mostly taking shots when he’s confident of the chance himself, seen with his 0.25 non-penalty expected goals per 90.

The upcoming 2026 World Cup in the United States, Canada and Mexico is a vitally important tournament for the USMNT, and Pulisic’s incredible growth in both skill and confidence at Milan is a blessing for his national team in the build-up to their main event.

His father Mark even highlighted recently how his son ‘loves Milan and wants to stay’, a good sign for the club, although he was also quick to point out how ‘football changes quickly’ and that ‘you can only think in the short term’.

Words: Apollo Heyes

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