To be ready for the next Premier League season, Christian Pulisic is facing a race against time.
Frank Lampard revealed that it took six weeks for the U.S. midfielder to overcome the hamstring injury he sustained in Arsenal’s 2-1 FA Cup final defeat.
Since transferring from Borussia Dortmund, Pulisic shone in his first campaign with Chelsea, with the 21-year-old a specific surprise after the coronavirus lockout.
Blues manager Lampard has acknowledged Pulisic will have an daunting battle to be ready in time for the new Premier League season set to begin on September 12.
“With Christian Pulisic I think it’s going to be touch and go for the start of the season,” said Lampard.
“We’re probably looking around a six-week injury. So with six weeks, doing the maths, it gets very close to, and is probably into, the start of the new season.
“But we have to treat it right, the injury.”
In his maiden campaign at Chelsea, Pulisic racked up 11 goals and eight assists and Lampard hailed the fast-improving forward for such an impactful start to the Stamford Bridge career.
“In the big scheme of things with Christian, when he reflects on his first season, the improvement levels coming here when you think of the goals and assists he’s had this year, it’s the best of his career,” said Lampard.
“And that’s his first year in the Premier League.
“From where he’s gone at the start to how he’s ended up and how he has played in restart, he should be very happy, and that’s down to his work.
“So we’ll get him fit, and get him ready. If he misses the first one or two games of the season, then we’ll have a firing Christian hopefully as hungry as he looked for the restart.”
Cesar Azpilicueta also suffered a hamstring complaint in the final defeat of Chelsea’s FA Cup but the Blues skipper faces a shorter rehabilitation period than Pulisic.
N’Golo Kante and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are both fit for Saturday’s last-16 Champions League second leg against Bayern Munich.
Callum Hudson-Odoi looks poised for a start with the Blues 3-0 down from the first leg in March, with Willian still sidelined by ankle disruption and Pedro healing from shoulder surgery.
Chelsea has also brought with them to Munich academy players Lewis Bate, Henry Lawrence, Dynel Simeu, Ian Maatsen and Armando Broja.