Christian Pulisic will likely miss "a couple of months" after sustaining a knee injury in Chelsea's Jan. 5 loss to Manchester City, according to Chelsea head coach Graham Potter.
Pulisic exited the game in pain midway through the first half after a challenge from Man City defender John Stones.
Christian Pulisic off injured for Chelsea. Visibly frustrated after he tried to continue but clearly wasn't right.
This was the (great and clean) John Stones challenge that caused the injury
— Henry Bushnell (@HenryBushnell) January 5, 2023
Potter said this past weekend that the American forward "just opened up his knee in the game the other day, so we're still analyzing it. It's going to be weeks, I would say."
But on Wednesday, speaking ahead of Chelsea's next Premier League match against Fulham, Potter said: “Christian is gonna be out for a couple of months, we think. Hopefully less."
Pulisic had struggled with various injuries throughout the early years of his career. He largely avoided them in 2022, though, and told Yahoo Sports via a representative before the World Cup: "Touch wood, things have been [going] really well for me the past 12 months — I've missed only one club match through injury."
He sustained a pelvic contusion while playing for the U.S. at the World Cup, but recovered and did not miss a game.
He returned to Chelsea after a brief break, and went straight into Potter's starting lineup when the Premier League resumed. He started each of the club's first three games after the World Cup break, against Bournemouth, Nottingham Forest and Man City. It was his most promising run of playing time in what had otherwise been a trying season.
Now he'll be sidelined for the rest of the winter, barring a surprisingly speedy recovery. He'll likely miss both of Chelsea's Champions League Round of 16 legs against his former club, Borussia Dortmund.
His injury won't affect the U.S. men's national team, though. He would not have been part of the team's January training camp even if healthy. The USMNT's next games — low-pressure Nations League matches against Grenada and El Salvador — are in late March. Its next notable competition would be the Nations League finals in June.