Christian Pulisic’s standout performer since the resumption of the Premier League campaign has led to inevitable comparisons with Eden Hazard but Frank Lampard believes that there is one standout difference between the pair.
The 21-year-old USA international, who joined Chelsea in a £58million deal from Borussia Dortmund last year, has been in excellent form for Frank Lampard’s side with eight goals and contributing six assists this season.
Hazard, meanwhile, is regarded as one of the Chelsea’s best attackers as he helped the club to win two Premier League titles a League Cup, FA Cup and Europa League during his seven-year stint at Stamford Bridge.
And Christian Pulisic recent thrilling performance have drawn comparisons with Eden as the USA international has been influential in Chelsea’s push to secure a top-four finish in the Premier League.
While both Hazard and Pulisic play in a similar position and revel in taking on players, Frank Lampard feels that the young American is more direct and potentially even better than the Real Madrid star with his off-ball runs.
‘Having played with Eden and seen him come to the club at a relatively young age,[that is] similar to Christian,’ Lampard said.
“We saw the development of Eden but he had a special talent straight away of being able to receive a ball and have great balance and go past players so well. He would draw a lot of players towards him to open up space for others. He was pretty unselfish in how he would make assists.
‘I think Christian is possibly more direct in his style sometimes, in terms of how he goes past players an runs off the ball, which I like.
‘Eden would come and get the ball and take it past players a lot. With Christian, sometimes I think he has the ability to break the line and run forward, which is a really great trait in the modern game.’
‘In terms of the comparison, which is why I stayed away from it a bit the other night, Eden has been here and done it and did it to an incredible level. Christian has it in his hands to make a real impact over a long period of time,’ Lampard added.
‘The thing I’m so happy with now is when we’re playing teams and the games are tough and you’re finding it hard to break teams down, he’s taking responsibility to change that, to change it in moments by using his ability to turn quickly and go past people.
‘It’s been great to see and, as I keep saying, there’s a lot of development to come for Christian. I’m very happy with him.’
Lampard, meanwhile, confirmed that both N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic doubt for their trip to Selhurst Park on Tuesday night.
N’Golo Kante has picked up a hamstring injury problems in the second half of Chelsea’s 3-0 win over Watford at Stamford Bridge on Saturday while Mateo Kovacic did not feature last week in the 3-2 defeat at West Ham United after injuring his Achilles.
He said: ‘Kante won’t be in the squad. He hurt his hamstring, it is a low level hamstring injury, maybe a week (before he returns),’.
‘Kovacic trained with us but won’t be ready. (Fikayo) Tomori had a setback, hopefully (he is) back next week.’
Chelsea are fourth in the standings with 57 points from 33 matches, two points ahead of Manchester United and a point behind Leicester City in the battle for a top-four finish.