Christian Pulisic has revealed that he wore a Chelsea shirt around the house ahead of his debut for the club in August.
Pulisic agreed a £58m move to Stamford Bridge from Borussia Dortmund (opens in new tab) in January, but spent the rest of the 2018/19 campaign with the Bundesliga outfit.
That meant he had to wait seven months to turn out for the Blues for the first time, and the United States international has explained how desperate he was to make his maiden appearance.
"The focus on football at this level means the pressure's always there too, but it's not something that worries me too much or that's important to me," he told Chelsea (opens in new tab)'s matchday programme ahead of Saturday's 1-0 loss to West Ham (opens in new tab).
"I have myself to worry about and I keep high enough standards for myself, so the pressures from outside don't really affect me as much.
"I expect a lot of myself and I have good people around me who care - the coaches, my team-mates - that are more important, so I try to focus on that.
"Just to be in England, to be here in London, playing for Chelsea, it's awesome. I have a confession to make about that, actually.
"During the summer, I had a short time off after playing for the national team in the Gold Cup, and I had this Chelsea jersey at home that was made for me when I signed back in January.
"I was wearing it around my house all the time - I just wanted to be here so bad, I just wanted to get started because I was excited for the challenge, excited for everything about it."
Saturday’s shock home defeat by London rivals West Ham cut Chelsea’s lead over fifth place to six points in the race for Champions League qualification.
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Greg Lea is a freelance football journalist who's filled in wherever FourFourTwo needs him since 2014. He became a Crystal Palace fan after watching a 1-0 loss to Port Vale in 1998, and once got on the scoresheet in a primary school game against Wilfried Zaha's Whitehorse Manor (an own goal in an 8-0 defeat).
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