After the collision: Christian Pulisic gives the all-clear

Matchwinner Christian Pulisic was still jubilant in the hospital bed when Joe Biden picked up the microphone in distant Michigan. “US one, Iran zero. Game over, hey, hey, hey,” the US President shouted on the sidelines of a speech on his economic policy. At the same time, to the great cheering of those present, he reported on a conversation with the coach and team before the game: “They were still unsure, but they made it. God love ’em.”

In addition to Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and sports celebrities such as David Beckham and LeBron James also sent congratulations to Qatar. There, the team was enthusiastically received at the hotel after reaching the World Cup round of 16 – including by Pulisic, who was injured in the winning goal against Iran (1-0), experienced the final whistle in the hospital, but was then quickly allowed to return to the team.

Pulisic was undoubtedly the hero of the day. “To sacrifice your crown jewels for an important World Cup goal – that’s dedication,” wrote football star JJ Watt on Twitter. But it wasn’t that bad: Pulisic was diagnosed with a bruised pelvis, even playing in the round of 16 against the Netherlands on Saturday is still possible.

For the former Dortmunder it would be the reward for a very strong World Cup so far. “Pulisic is the prodigy of this over-talented young generation,” wrote the USA Today newspaper of the 24-year-old midfielder, who has already won the Champions League with Chelsea: “He is the Captain America, who achieves things that no American has ever done has achieved – for club and country.”

With his country, Pulisic can reach a World Cup quarter-finals for the first time since 2002 on Saturday (4:00 p.m. CET in the FAZ live ticker for the soccer World Cup and on Magenta TV), but the Netherlands hurdle is a high one – and well-known. “Nevertheless, we don’t think it’s an honor to play against them now. We deserve this game. And we don’t want to go home afterwards either,” said coach Gregg Berhalter.

And Pulisic? The match winner, despite his pain, jumped up and down enthusiastically as the team returned to the team hotel and announced on Instagram. “I’m so incredibly proud of the boys. And don’t worry – I’ll be ready again on Saturday.”


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