Tottenham are in advanced talks to sign Cristian Romero in a double swoop…
That’s according to football.london reporter Alasdair Gold, who delivered the exciting transfer claim at the start of the week.
“Tottenham are in advanced negotiations to sign Cristian Romero and Pierluigi Gollini from Atalanta, football.london understands,” he wrote.
It’s thought that the Premier League side have ‘very strong’ interest in the 23-year-old centre-back and it’s believed that he is the leading candidate of all of Spurs’ mooted central defensive targets. Atalanta will have to activate their €16m (£13.8m) option-to-buy from Juventus a year early before selling him to the north Londoners for profit.
Sky Sports suggest that he could be available for around €40m (£34m).
This could be the first real sign of what is to come from Fabio Paratici and his interesting methods in the transfer market. He reportedly likes to negotiate deals with multiple players for each position which needs filling before settling on the right man.
It now appears that Romero is the centre-back for which Nuno Espirito Santo will be longing, especially before the season gets underway on August 15.
Defensive mistakes and a lack of leadership resulted in Spurs recording the worst defensive record of any of the traditional ‘big six’ last season, and that’s something which needs to be fixed before their opening clash with Manchester City next month.
The £31.5m-rated colossus played a major part in Atalanta’s third-placed finish and capped off a phenomenal year, in which he was named Serie A’s ‘Defender of the Year’, with a Copa America triumph as he helped Argentina defeat arch-rivals Brazil in the final.
His versatility and potential ticks plenty of boxes for Nuno. Romero is able to play as a two or as a three in the middle, and can also be deployed at right-back.
Indeed, the five-cap Argentina international ranked amongst Gian Piero Gasperini’s most consistent performers last term, with an average WhoScored rating of 7.14 bettered only by more attacking options.
Romero won a massive 3.6 aerial duels per game and also topped the charts for interceptions – a whopping 3.1 per match, which was the best average in the entire league. He also ranked first for such a statistic in the Champions League, too.
Furthermore, the 6 foot 1 Atalanta beast also managed two tackles per match and a seasonal 86.2% passing accuracy, via WhoScored.
These numbers suggest that he is a very solid and intelligent option and one who is very comfortable on the ball, something which should suit the attacking system Nuno is expected to play this season.
Italian football expert Conor Clancy waxed lyrical about Romero’s exploits during an exclusive interview with This is Futbol recently.
He said: “He has been phenomenal as he won the MVP award for the best defender in Serie A, but he is one of the most deceptively dirty players in the Serie A. However, when he has the ball, his distribution and passing is so, so good.
“Romero can pick out a 50-yard pass onto the foot of a striker perfectly but it’s something that goes a little bit unnoticed because his defensive work is so good and he is a top, top defender.”
Also described as a potential “phenomenal buy” for Spurs, it seems that the possible arrival of the Argentine sensation could help fix a hugely problematic and key area.
If Paratici manages to pull it off, it will be his first masterclass since his arrival earlier this month. It would certainly be one outstanding addition for a team which struggled defensively last season.