Tottenham Hotspur boss Antonio Conte has been speaking to the press ahead of Sunday’s game against Aston Villa and has commented on his approach to handling Cristian Romero after the player won the World Cup.

Romero was part of the Argentina squad who lifted the coveted trophy in Qatar earlier this month. The combative centre-half played a key role in the South American side’s journey to the final, including playing all 120 minutes of that epic final against France.

The 24-year-old has seen his reputation at international level grow thanks to his displays at the World Cup and has quickly established himself as a mainstay of the Argentina backline despite only playing for his country 19 times (Transfermarkt).

Upon winning the World Cup, the whole nation of Argentina celebrated wildly for days on end, and the planned open-top bus parade even had to be abandoned due to safety concerns with overcrowding (The Athletic).

The celebrations of Romero and his teammates led to Antonio Conte making a joke about how worried he was for his star defender (Football.London) but it now sounds like everyone is firmly focused on the task at hand at club level.

In his press conference, Conte said (Football.London): “From what I saw in last few days in training session, I have seen him with great focus and great desire to come back and play for us. For sure I am really happy for him and it is important to have in our team two World Cup champions.”

“But he has to know very well that now starts the more difficult period for him because expectation is going to become high for him. For this reason he has to work even more and continue to work,” he added.

Cristian Romero

(Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Spurs Web Opinion

I can’t wait for Romero to be back on the pitch for Spurs. He is such an important part of the Spurs backline and he brings so much stability and composure to the whole back three. I’ve a feeling he will be chomping at the bit to get stuck in again, and hopefully he can bring the confidence of the World Cup win with him.

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