2021 Copa America winner Lionel Messi singles out “extraordinary” Tottenham Hotspur star Cristian Romero for praise
Argentine won the Copa America in 2021 to hand Lionel Messi his first major international trophy, and current Tottenham Hotspur defender Cristian Romero was an integral part of that trophy-winning squad.
Shortly after winning the 2021 Copa America final against Brazil, Spurs signed Romero for £42.5m that summer. Reminiscing about his country’s success last year in the Netflix documentary Sean Eternos: Campeones de America, the Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) forward said [h/t Football.London]:
“Cuti’s appearance was extraordinary for us, for the future of the team and for that moment.”
Romero, 24, is expected to make manager Lionel Scaloni’s Argentina squad for the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. In fact, the former Juventus and Atalanta centre-back is a shoo-in to make the starting XI from matchday 1.
Lionel Messi praises Tottenham’s Cristian Romero
He is as crucial to Argentina as he is to us. Under manager Antonio Conte, Romero has played 13 games across competitions. He is currently sidelined with a hamstring injury but it is said that he could recover in time for Argentina’s opener against Saudi Arabia on 22 November.
Romero curiously missed four games with multiple fitness issues in Argentina’s 2021 Copa America campaign. However, his presence was highly important in the three games that he did play.
He helped his team keep valuable clean sheets against Uruguay and Paraguay in two 1-0 wins after drawing the opening Group game 1-1 against Chile. Then, he was a strong presence in the final against Brazil where his team won once again.
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Messi, 35, is 11 years senior to Cuti Romero and to get such praise from one of the world’s best players and one of Argentina’s elder statesmen will fill the young defender with immense confidence for the tournament.