Chelsea and Valencia are playing a vital Champions League group match today, and as has been typical lately throughout a run of solid form, Christian Pulisic earned the start.

With the game tied 1-1 in the second half, Willian sent a second ball in after a cleared corner kick, with Pulisic getting on the end of the resulting header and sliding it into the net. He was first judged to be offside, but VAR stepped in and, after a few different angles showed he was in fact being played on.

The goal was Pulisic’s first Champions League goal for Chelsea, and his third Champions League goal overall, the first two coming for Borussia Dortmund. Unfortunately for Chelsea, the goal didn’t end up serving as the winner; Valencia equalized thanks to an intended cross that somehow deflected in.

Chelsea did hang on for a 2-2 draw, though, which is crucial; assuming Ajax defeats Lille today, that would mean Ajax enters the final day of matches with 10 points to Chelsea and Valencia’s 8, with Lille essentially eliminated. Chelsea though has their final match against Lille at Stamford Bridge on December 10th, while Valencia travels to the Netherlands. The draw today means Chelsea can assure an advance to the knockout rounds with a win, and with Ajax and Valencia both also not assured of advancing, that match could be a lot 0f fun.

But for American fans, the key takeaway is likely that Pulisic seems to be settling in nicely, his potential career trajectory restored for now to the sort of heights many had hoped for him.

About Jay Rigdon

Jay is a columnist at Awful Announcing. He is not a strong swimmer. He is probably talking to a dog in a silly voice at this very moment.