Spurs: Cristian Romero’s post-World Cup woes continued in Milan

Tottenham Hotspur have it all to do back in north London after they were beaten 1-0 by AC Milan in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie at the San Siro on Tuesday night.

Brahim Diaz’s seventh-minute header was the only difference between the Serie A champions and Spurs, who coped pretty well in the absence of some of Antonio Conte‘s most important stars.

A youthful pairing of Pape Matar Sarr and Oliver Skipp looked comfortable for large spells, in the absence of the suspended Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and the injured Rodrigo Bentancur, but were rarely able to build any attacking threat, with Harry Kane, Dejan Kulusevski and Heung-min Son thwarted by a resolute backline.

The same couldn’t be said for the visitors as on another day or against more prolific opposition, mistakes would have been punished even more. It was another worrying outing for Conte’s backline, spearheaded by the calamitous Cristian Romero, who should have been sent off for the second successive game.

Is Romero a liability for Spurs?




How did Cristian Romero perform against Milan?

Rated as the Lilywhites’ poorest player on the night with a 4/10 rating, the Evening Standard’s Dan Kilpatrick lambasted the Argentina international for his involvement in the Rossoneri’s goal, claiming that he was  ‘meekly beaten in the air by Theo Hernandez.’

He also added: “Lucky not to pick up another red card for a wild tackle on Sandro Tonali.”

Indeed, despite winning 100% of his aerial duels (62.5% overall) and putting in four clearances, the 24-year-old – who cost around €55m (£48.5m) – was a walking disaster throughout the match as he lived life on the edge.

It very much continued his poor form since returning from his World Cup triumph in Qatar earlier this year.

The £165k-per-week titan’s last outing before this one saw him sent off for a careless lunge on Jack Grealish, then in his absence at the weekend, Spurs were thrashed 4-1 by Leicester City.

Four of Romero’s last five outings across the Premier League and Champions League have seen him fail to register a WhoScored rating of above 6.32, which would see him rank as Spurs’ second-worst performer in the former and worst in the latter (of those to start 60% or more games).

Whilst Son has been horribly out of sorts over the last few months, Romero’s erratic nature is costing Conte dearly at the moment. He’s ultimately lucky that there are few that could rival his place in the starting lineup.

The 53-touch Argentine was slammed as being an “absolute reckless liability” by content creator Rory Talks, whilst talkSPORT’s Max Rushden labelled him “needlessly violent” and also backed up Kilpatrick’s aforementioned claim by suggesting that Romero “could have had two reds.”

Spurs can count themselves fortunate to return to N17 with 11 men and only a one-goal disadvantage, given just how poor Romero was for the side on Tuesday night.

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