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‘Pulisic not at Chelsea to fill Hazard’s boots’ – Wright-Phillips tells USMNT star to ‘build his own legacy’

14:36 BST 06/06/2019
Christian Pulisic Dortmund Chelsea
The former Blues winger wants to see the summer signing freed of the pressure of filling the void set to be created by the Belgian star

Christian Pulisic is not at Chelsea to “fill Eden Hazard’s boots”, says Shaun Wright-Phillips, with the United States international urged to “build his own legacy” at Stamford Bridge.

The 20-year-old playmaker has completed a move to the Blues that was agreed during the winter transfer window.

When that deal was tied up, those in west London had been hoping to see Pulisic complement the creative influences of Hazard.

The Belgian forward is, however, edging towards the exits, with Real Madrid ready to snap him up as he approaches the final year of his contract in England.

Somebody will need to fill the void his departure creates, but Wright-Phillips says it would be a big ask to expect a Premier League rookie to take on that role.

The former Blues winger told 888sport: “I wouldn’t say Pulisic is there to fill Hazard’s boots. It’s not fair to put that load on him.

“He’s there to bring another way of playing for Chelsea and he will create his own footprints basically and build his own legacy there at the Bridge.

“He is definitely a player the fans will like. In America he is rated very, very highly.”

While eager to curb expectations around Pulisic, Wright-Phillips is happy to talk up the potential of another exciting prospect at Chelsea.

Callum Hudson-Odoi is currently nursing his way back from an untimely Achilles injury, but big things are expected of the 18-year-old.

Ex-England international Wright-Phillips said of a current Three Lions star: “I think Callum Hudson-Odoi can go to the top.

“We’ve all seen the glimpses of what he’s capable of and if he plays regularly and he finds a consistency and it keeps happening for him then he can only grow and mature.

“He can then become the player we expect him to be and he’ll be key for Chelsea and England once he’s back fit.

“Callum Hudson-Odoi could be the missing piece that Chelsea need and the same goes for [Ruben] Loftus-Cheek. They will both be very important players for Chelsea next year.”

Loftus-Cheek is also recovering from an Achilles injury at present, with two Chelsea academy graduates prevented from linking up with England for the Nations League finals in Portugal.

Read the full 888sport interview with Shaun Wright-Phillips and his thoughts on how Chelsea have the talent on loan to make up for the loss of Hazard