Antonio Conte asks for two crucial things from Cristian Romero if he is to be a Tottenham star
The Tottenham Hotspur head coach has been speaking about his talented but fıeгу Argentinean central defender after another full-on display against Roma
Cristian Romero is a fıeгу but important player for Antonio Conte at Tottenham Hotspur (Image: Photo by Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)
Antonio Conte has called upon Cristian Romero and his Tottenham Hotspur players to have ‘a hot heart and a cold mind’.
The 24-year-old Argentina international is a fıeгу character on the pitch and often treads a fine line between incredibly well-timed tackles and reckless lunges. He was sent off in Conte’s first match as Spurs manager in November, picking up two yellow cards against Vitesse Arnhem in the Europa Conference League clash and racked up 12 yellow cards in all competitions last season.
At one point during the campaign, Conte had to publicly state that Romero needed to calm down and avoid picking up two more Premier League yellow cards that would have seen him banned for two games in the competition.
To his credit, Romero, named Serie A Defender of the Year in the previous campaign, did not receive another yellow card from that moment on but still managed to maintain his edge.
However, even in friendly matches this summer, the Argentine has shown his fire, and during the 1-0 defeat to Roma in Israel on Saturday night, he put in some strong challenges and at one point, he and Lorenzo Pellegrini had each other by the throat, and subsequently both went into the referee’s book.
Romero’s loan move from Atalanta is set to be made permanent in the coming days, and Conte has recognised the defender’s importance to Tottenham but will often avoid lavishing too much praise on the centre-back, believing that he is still very much a work in progress.
When asked about Romero’s fıeгу side coming to the fore again in a summer friendly, having clashed with opponents in other games in South Korea while protecting teammates, Conte explained what he wants from the Argentine and all of his Spurs squad.
“I think that in every situation, it’s important to have a hot heart and a cold mind. This is the most important thing if you want to be a winner,” said the Italian.
“You have to be ready to fight in the right way, but you also have to pay great attention. At the same time, I like when my team go to help another player to create a special unity.
“But every time, we need to also have a mind that’s very, very cold. This is very, very important if you want to take another step.”