Chelsea left-back Marc Cucurella has vowed to never cut his distinctive long hair despite it being bizarrely and controversially pulled by Tottenham Hotspur defender Cristian Romero in Sunday’s fiery draw at Stamford Bridge.
Cucurella insisted he has “no problem” with Romero, who escaped punishment despite grabbing the Chelsea defender by the hair and pulling him to the ground in the final minutes of Sunday’s game.
Thomas Tuchel, the Chelsea head coach, was incensed by the fact that Var took no action over the incident, which came just moments before Harry Kane struck a late equaliser for Spurs.
Cucurella has now said he was similarly surprised that Romero was not punished. Chelsea’s new signing, who was playing in only his second game for the club after his move from Brighton this summer, also said the incident changed the final result of the match.
Asked if he will now cut his hair to prevent such an incident from happening again, Cucurella said: “No, no. This is my style.
“For me it was a clear [foul]. In the game, out on the pitch, I didn't see the video. But I think with the video it is very clear. This is maybe one error by the referee or the VAR.
“But sometimes the referee makes good decisions, sometimes not good decisions. This is not my problem. The players are focused on the game and maybe we have to work hard to not concede this goal in the last minute in the next games.
“The referee in the stadium said they were checking a red card and for me, it's very clear. The video is very clear. At this moment, with the referee, I don't know what happened. Sometimes it's good, sometimes it's bad. This is football and in this game, it was an error. But in another game, the referee takes a good decision.”
Cucurella said his hair had been pulled only once before in his career, when he was 12 years old. Asked if it hurt when Romero dragged him to the floor, he replied: “No, for me it is no problem. Before the game I spoke with him and it is a fight on the pitch. I have no problem with him and it is only an action in the game. Maybe it was an important action, as it maybe changed the final result.”
Cucurella moved to Chelsea earlier this month in a deal worth around £60 million. The versatile Spaniard, who can play on the left of a back three, as a left-back or a left wing-back, said he found out upon joining the club that Tuchel had once scouted him while he was playing for Barcelona’s academy.
“It is a lot of money and it is a big responsibility for me,” Cucurella said. “I was surprised because he [Tuchel] watched me when I played in Barcelona. He was a big fan. They gave me this opportunity and I need to work hard for him.”
Cucurella revealed that his move from Brighton, where he excelled last season under the guidance of Graham Potter, marked the realisation of a dream that had formed in his mind when he was driving through London last year.
“With my family we went to London and when we came back to Brighton we drove in front of Stamford Bridge,” he said. “I remember I said to my wife, ‘imagine one day playing in this stadium’, and then this summer I had the opportunity. It is like a dream. We need to work hard to stay here for a long time.”
The 24-year-old, who believes his best position is as a left-back in a back four, described his move to Brighton from Getafe last summer, for a fee of around £15m, as the best decision of his career.
“When I was in Getafe I played as a left midfielder and this is not my best position,” he said. “I think before coming to Brighton me and my family decided we need to change the league or play in my original position, as left-back. I think this is the best step in my career, because if I never came to Brighton I would not be here today.”