Christian Pulisic cleared to play for USMNT on Saturday at World Cup

DOHA, Qatar – Christian Pulisic will be with the U.S. men when they take on the Netherlands in the round of 16.

Pulisic was cleared to play Friday night, after he’d gone through training. Earlier in the day, USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter said it “looks pretty good” for the U.S. star to play but that he wanted to see him in training before making a final determination.

Pulisic showed no apparent signs of injury during the portion of training that was open to media, running and doing the same work as his teammates. Players dealing with injury often work to the side or do warmups on the bike. 

“I think with Christian, we’re hopeful,” Berhalter said. “At this stage, it’s go time. If you can push through it, you do.”

Pulisic came off at halftime against Iran with a pelvic contusion. He’d taken a knee to his pelvic bone in a full-speed collision with Iran’s goalkeeper after scoring in the 1-0 win that sent the USMNT into the knockout rounds of the World Cup.

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Pulisic was taken to the hospital for tests after coming out of the game, but was back at the team hotel and waiting in the lobby when the rest of the team returned. The injury was “very painful,” Pulisic said Thursday, but he hoped to play against the Dutch.

A win would put the USMNT in the quarterfinals for only the second time in modern American soccer history and first since 2002.

“I’m taking it day by day right now,” Pulisic said Thursday, “but I’m doing everything in my power to be able to be out there on the field on Saturday.”

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