Christian Pulisic became the first United States men’s international to score a goal in a Champions League semi-final, after scoring in the first half of a 1-1 draw between Chelsea and Real Madrid.
The goal was also Pulisic’s fifth in the Champions League, placing him ahead of DaMarcus Beasley on the US men’s top scorers list.
Christian Pulisic is the first U.S. International to score in a UCL Semifinal.
Pulisic (5) also breaks a tie with DaMarcus Beasley (4) for most UCL goals by U.S. Internationals. pic.twitter.com/hcpZ23FsCC
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 27, 2021
Pulisic found himself alone in the area in the 14th minute and cut to his right, beating Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and shooting between two defenders to give Chelsea an early lead.
Karim Benzema equalized for the hosts later on, leaving both teams with everything to play in next week’s second leg at Stamford Bridge.
After the match, Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel said: “The goal was well deserved and we should have scored at least one more. We fit in more or less out of nowhere and that can always happen against individual quality,” he added.
“It was a disappointing result at halftime. We had to stay calm and not lose confidence. The second half was very tactical, you could feel that we were a bit tired,” he said.
The 22-year-old Pulisic also scored in the 2017 round of 16 while still at Borussia Dortmund and is now the youngest player to score for Chelsea in the UCL semi-finals, passing Ramires, who did so at 25. years against Barcelona in 2012.
Pulisic, moreover, is now also the first American international to score in any competition against Real Madrid.
Two US players have scored in the UEFA Women’s Champions League semi-finals: Carli Lloyd did so in 2017 while on loan to Manchester City and Alana Cook did so last weekend in Paris Saint’s 1-1 draw. -Germain with Barcelona.
1 – Christian Pulisic 🇺🇸 is the first American player in history to score against Real Madrid in all competitions and the first to score in a UEFA Champions League semi-final. Star pic.twitter.com/6POgjhbZSs
– OptaJose (@OptaJose) April 27, 2021
Pulisic has battled injuries throughout his career and Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel stated earlier this month that he needed to learn to trust his body again. The 22-year-old winger has started six of Chelsea’s last eight games in all competitions.