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Christian Pulisic Denies Rumors He Wants to Leave Chelsea: 'I'm Obviously Happy Here'

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVMay 14, 2021

Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Chelsea midfielder Christian Pulisic has pushed aside speculation he'll look to leave Stamford Bridge during the summer transfer window.

Pulisic told ESPN's James Olley he's willing to fight for a spot in the Blues' starting XI after losing his full-time role since Thomas Tuchel took over as manager in January.

"Yeah, I'm obviously happy here. It has been an incredible two years," he said Friday. "People have always doubted and said: 'Oh, he's not playing, does he want to go here, does he want to go there?' I'm always up for a challenge, I love competing, I love the position I'm in and I'm enjoying my time here."

ESPN FC @ESPNFC

Christian Pulisic has dismissed speculation he could leave Chelsea this summer and insisted he is relishing the challenge of proving himself under Thomas Tuchel 💪 pic.twitter.com/bRHUItGScv

Pulisic scored the opening goal in the first leg of Chelsea's Champions League semifinal against Real Madrid, but he was left out of the lineup for the second leg last week. He entered the 2-0 victory as a substitute, but his comments after the match raised further questions about his future.

"Very frustrated," he told CBS Sports' Roger Gonzalez when asked how it felt to be left out of the starting XI. "Umm, yeah, there's not much else to say. I wanted to play from the beginning, as I always do. I've had to continue to prove myself over and over again. But, as always, I reach out to God and he gives me strength. With that behind me, nothing can stop me really."

The 22-year-old United States international has recorded six goals and three assists across 34 appearances in the Premier League and Champions League this season.

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He's dealt with some knocks throughout the term, but he confirmed to Olley he's healthy ahead of Saturday's FA Cup final against Leicester City.

"We know what Leicester is all about. They are going to battle, they are a tough team. They've done extremely well in the league this year," Pulisic said. "We know about their attacking ability and some of the players they have. So we expect them to come and battle. We are going to give it everything, and hopefully, if we play the way we do and we match their intensity, I think we can beat them."

Pulisic joined Chelsea ahead of the 2019-20 term after a transfer agreement was reached in January 2019 with Borussia Dortmund, though he finished the 2018-19 season with BVB.

He'd likely play a more consistent starting role with numerous other clubs throughout Europe, but he sounds motivated to prove he can earn he earn those minutes under Tuchel.

It will be interesting to see whether Pulisic is featured in both this weekend's FA Cup final and the Champions League final against Manchester City, which is scheduled for May 29.

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