Pulisic not ready yet but return date is set as Chelsea prepare to welcome USMNT star back

Christian Pulisic Chelsea 2019-20
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Frank Lampard has ruled the American out of his plans for a Champions League clash with Rennes, but he will come into contention to face Tottenham

Christian Pulisic is not ready to step back into the Chelsea fold just yet, as they ready themselves for a Champions League clash with Rennes, but the American could come into contention to face Tottenham.

That is the plan to have been laid out by Blues boss Frank Lampard, who is currently in the process of conjuring up a winning formula for another European fixture, with Chelsea due in France on Tuesday.

United States international Pulisic will not be making that trip, as he continues to recover from a hamstring complaint, with Lampard reluctant to take any risks on a key man.

He will have Kai Havertz and Thiago Silva pushing for places in his starting XI, after seeing both sit out a 2-0 win over Newcastle, but a USMNT star will be held back for a derby date with Spurs on Sunday.

“Kai and Thiago both travel and they are fit for selection,” Lampard told reporters when asked for a fitness update.

“Christian stays back and doesn’t travel but the good news is that he has had aggression in the last week.

“The reason he has stayed back is to get some physical work in so hopefully that will have him ready for selection come the weekend and onwards.”

Pulisic’s ongoing absence should help to keep Mason Mount in Lampard’s thoughts, with the England international playmaker enjoying an impressive run of form.

The 21-year-old has seen his value questioned at times, for club and country, but he continues to silence his critics and has welcomed the added competition for places he now faces at Stamford Bridge.

“For me, my standard is always going into the next season wanting to be better and achieve more,” Mount said when quizzed on the challenges he faces.

“I have done that throughout my whole career.

“There are world-class players coming into the club and the team and I have said before the boys know what we can achieve. It is brilliant to have that competition in the group.

“I always want to push myself to get better and better and set new goals and achieve more. That is the type of person I am and it’s great to have world-class players and competition in the group.”

Mount added on learning off those around him: “We all learn stuff off each other.

“When you have players like Kai and Timo [Werner] coming in, and Thiago Silva who has been through a lot and been at the top of the game for a long time, you can learn so much experience from them by just talking to him for five minutes here and there.

“He is a brilliant player and when they come in it really helps young players coming through and gives us a lot of experience.”