Christian Pulisic could make first start in two months as Chelsea winger nears full fitness for USMNT clash

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 (AP)
(AP)

Christian Pulisic could make his first start in over two months when the United States face Jamaica in World Cup qualification on Tuesday night.

The clash in Kingston comes after the Chelsea winger came off the bench to fire his country to victory against Mexico on the weekend, putting the Stars and Stripes top of the CONMEBOL qualifier group.

It was the third appearance in a row Pulisic, 23, has made as a substitute having featured briefly against Malmo and Burnley for Chelsea. In September, the winger injured his ankle on international duty to further disrupt his start to the season.

But Gregg Berhalter is open to starting his star on Tuesday and said: "It comes down to a judgment call. It comes down to how we feel he can best affect the opponent.

"We could have started him against Mexico, but we didn't want to start him against Mexico because we knew that he couldn't go the full 90. So it's going to be a similar type of question that we have to ask for this game.

"If we do start him, how much time can he play and what does that look like for the game and getting the result of the game?

"For us, it's still up in the air, but what I'd say is that he's come along really well after the game. He trained yesterday and will be in full training today so we'll see."

Thomas Tuchel irked the USMNT boss ahead of the international break, by stating his hope that Berhalter is “responsible enough” and Pulisic isn’t “overused”. That earned a swift response from the American.

Berhalter said last week: “Common sense is going to tell us you can't start a guy in a game like this when he's only been training for four days and has been out for two months. Our idea wasn't to play him 180 minutes in this trip anyway.”

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