The other Chelsea FC players walked to the trophy stand wearing just their royal blue uniforms to accept the medal signifying they had won the UEFA Champions League, the greatest honor in the club version of the world’s most popular sport. Christian Pulisic, though, wrapped what looked like a gray sweater around his body. It seemed an odd time to worry about the chill in Portugal’s night air, but he was entitled to comfort in such a magnificent moment.
As Chelsea’s celebration of its 1-0 victory over Manchester City lingered on the field at Estadio do Dragao, however, it became apparent Pulisic’s additional garment was there to make a statement. If one looked closely, when it still was draped backward over his shoulders, it was apparent there was a red, white and blue logo affixed to the chest. It was the U.S. Soccer crest.
By the time Pulisic got his moment with the trophy and was surrounded by his parents, Mark and Kelley, he’d pulled on the sweatshirt to show the world his true colors and present American men’s soccer with one of its greatest advertisements.