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Hazard: Pulisic can become one of best in the world at Chelsea

23:16 GMT+3 26/07/2019
Christian Pulisic Chelsea 2019-20
The USMNT star will be expected to fill the Real Madrid man's boots at Stamford Bridge, and the Belgian thinks he can rise to the challenge

Eden Hazard says Christian Pulisic can become one of the best players in the world as the American international looks to fill his boots at Chelsea.

Hazard left for Real Madrid this summer after seven years at Stamford Bridge in which he scored over 100 goals, won two Premier League titles and was named the club’s Player of the Year on four occasions.

New boy Pulisic will be expected to hit the ground running following his €64 million (£58m/$73m) move from Bundesliga runners-up Borussia Dortmund, but it is a challenge Hazard thinks he can rise to.

"[Pulisic] can be one of the best in the future for sure," Hazard told The Associated Press.

"He can be [a star]. Now he's at one of the best clubs in the world... he's a proper player."

Pulisic himself has been quick to downplay comparisons to Hazard, telling Sky Sports earlier in July: "For me, it's coming in as my own player, proving myself and doing the best I can to help this team."

The American was an international revelation when he first burst onto the scene at Dortmund, but there had been concerns that his development was stagnating over the last couple of seasons.

He was overtaken in Lucien Favre’s pecking order by the likes of Jadon Sancho and Jacob Bruun Larsen, though he still contributed four goals and four assists in 20 Bundesliga outings last season.

Now, under Frank Lampard, he is looking to take his game to the next level and deliver on his undoubted potential, something his manager has said he believes he can do.

Making his first start in a Chelsea shirt, he impressed in their most recent pre-season friendly game, a 2-1 win over Barcelona in the final of the Rakuten Cup.

Young guns Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount also started in a strong Chelsea eleven, in a match which saw Antoine Griezmann take to the field in a Barcelona shirt for the first time.

Abraham was guilty of some wasteful finishing but will have helped his confidence with a goal, as Lampard runs the rule over the youngsters he wants to integrate into his side this season.

Pulisic’s international teammate Matt Miazga has been sent out on loan, alongside young defender Jake Clarke-Salter and Lewis Baker, who has left for the Bundesliga.

Winger Callum Hudson-Odoi, meanwhile, is set to sign a bumper new contract in order to fend off interest from German champions Bayern Munich.