By Nick Purewal, PA
Christian Pulisic cannot wait to get back to Wembley and handle his unfinished FA Cup final business.
Pulisic fired Chelsea into a stunning early lead in the 2020 FA Cup final against Arsenal, only to hobble off with a hamstring injury.
The USA forward was forced to watch from the sidelines as the Gunners hit back to win 2-1, with Frank Lampard’s Blues unable to turn that early impetus into victory.
Chelsea reached their third FA Cup final in a row with Sunday’s 2-0 semi-final win over Crystal Palace, as Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Mason Mount’s goals subdued the Eagles.
Pulisic was an unused substitute in that match but has returned to full fitness after another injury-hit campaign, and is determined to help the Blues see out their season in style with further silverware.
Asked if he wants to put right his own Wembley record after scoring in 2020 but ending up on the losing side, Pulisic replied: “Yeah absolutely, that’s the idea. We want to get well-prepared.
“Obviously we’ve got other games leading up to that. But we want to be 100 per cent ready to go when the final comes around, and I’m going to do my best to play a part in that and hopefully help us win.
“I want to play as much as I can now, that’s definitely my goal.”
Chelsea will face Liverpool in the FA Cup final in a repeat of February’s Carabao Cup showdown where the Reds prevailed 11-10 on penalties.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) April 18, 2022
Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga proved the luckless man to miss from the spot after Liverpool counterpart Caoimhin Kelleher had fired into the net in a near-flawless shoot-out from both sides.
Thomas Tuchel’s side have drawn both Premier League encounters with Liverpool this term, and only those penalties could separate the teams in the Carabao Cup final.
Pulisic admitted facing the Reds again in another cup showdown would add an extra spice to the May 14 Wembley showpiece.
— Emirates FA Cup (@EmiratesFACup) April 18, 2022
Asked if there will be extra edge to taking on Liverpool again, Pulisic replied: “Yeah, I think that will be good, we definitely want to play against them again and it will be a really good match, and we’re looking forward already to the challenge.
“And hopefully we can get on the better side of them.
“There’s not really been much between us in the matches this season, so we’re hoping we can come out on top.
“It’s not going to be easy, it’s probably going to be another one of those games, and hopefully we can just get the edge on them.”