Pep Guardiola, Manager of FC Barcelona Teammates at the Chelsea training ground
In the past two years Christian Pulisic has been fortunate enough to experience soccer at the highest of youth levels as he has been invited to, and participated in, team trials with three internationally acclaimed clubs, FC Barcelona of Spain, Chelsea FC of England, and FC Porto of Portugal. Christian has been to Barcelona twice, having attended weeklong sessions in October of 2008 and 2009, and spent time at Porto and Chelsea in 2010.
Christian trained in seven to ten day sessions at these locations working along side other talented young players from around the world. He has had the opportunity to see the full youth Academy systems these clubs have in place, and experience cultures far different than his American roots. While the workouts were both fun and trying, the most difficult part for Christian was that in Porto and Barcelona the coaching staff didn’t speak English, so he was forced to listen to the directions in Spanish and Portuguese and then try to figure out the exercises on his own based on what the other players were doing.
Aside from the high-class soccer education that Christian received in these short spells in Europe, he has had other phenomenal non-soccer playing moments that he can always remember from the trips. Experiences including; having a private lunch with his dad and Pep Guardiola (the manager of Barcelona), watching a game at Stamford Bridge (Chelsea’s Home Stadium) on the day they beat Wigan to clinch the Barclay’s Premier League title in 2010, and catching a Europa League game at Porto.
Although by birth year a true U12 player, Christian currently plays on the U14 Elite ’96 team coached by Aleks Radovic, and for the U14 Development Academy team coached by Todd Wawrousek and his father, Mark.
A humble and hard working player, Christian hails form a soccer family. Both parents, Kelley and Mark, are part of the PA Classics coaching staff, and both were All-American soccer players themselves at George Mason University. As a family they lived in London for one year where Kelley taught grade school and Mark worked on continuing his soccer education, gaining his UEFA “A” License. At present they reside in Hershey where Christian works just as hard at being a full time 7th grader.