Christian Pulisic spent four seasons with Chelsea. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)
Christian Pulisic is headed to Italy.
The American star forward will join AC Milan of Serie A from Chelsea, on a transfer worth more than €20 million ($21.9. million) with add-ons, according to Fabrizio Romano. Pulisic had reportedly already agreed on personal terms to join Milan, per Romano.
French club Lyon of Ligue 1 reportedly also submitted a €25 million ($27.2 million) offer to Chelsea for Pulisic, but the 23-year-old rejected it, according to ESPN.
Pulisic spent the past four seasons with the English club, where he scored 20 goals and tallied nine assists in 98 matches. He joined Chelsea from the Bundesliga’s Borussia Dortmund in 2019 on a reported $65 million transfer, which still stands as the most expensive transfer payment for an American player. Pulisic tallied 13 goals and 16 assists at Dortmund from 2015 to 2019.
Most notably, though, Pulisic is a captain for the United States men’s national team. He scored one goal and added two assists during the U.S.’s four World Cup matches in Qatar in 2022, during which he also won two Man of the Match awards. Pulisic has scored 20 goals with 11 assists in 50 USMNT matches since 2016.
He’ll now get an opportunity to play in the Champions League again this upcoming season, something he wouldn’t have been able to do if he stayed with Chelsea (who finished 12th in the English Premier League table) or agreed to join Lyon (who finished seventh in Ligue 1). Pulisic also will join fellow ex-Chelsea player Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who landed at Milan on a reported €16 million ($17.5 million) transfer.
Chelsea shedding players
Pulisic’s transfer is the most recent in a slew of players Chelsea either lost or shipped out during this transfer window.
Loftus-Cheek, Kai Havertz (Arsenal), Mason Mount (Manchester United), Mateo Kovacic (Manchester City), Kalidou Koulibably (Al-Hilal) and Eduoard Mendy (Al Ahli) were transferred out this summer. All but Mendy played at least 20 matches this past season. Other veterans such as César Azpilicueta (Atlético Madrid) and N’Golo Kanté (Al-Ittihad) left on free transfers.
Hakim Ziyech was supposed to join Al-Nassr as well, but his deal collapsed after medical tests revealed a knee issue.
Chelsea must hope a roster and coaching shake-up (the club recently hired ex-Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino) will help the club crawl out from the middle of the EPL table. The Blues spent more than $600 million after Todd Boehly bought Chelsea in 2022 but won only 11 league matches and finished with just 44 points. Chelsea also lost in the quarterfinals of the Champions League to Real Madrid and fell to Manchester City in the third round of both the FA Cup and the EFL Cup.