Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag believes that new summer signing Casemiro will benefit from his first Premier League appearances as he starts to become accustomed to the pace of the league, the challenges of a new country and his new teammates.
The £60 million summer signing made his debut late in the second half of the 1-0 victory over Southampton at St Mary’s in the Premier League on Saturday. The Brazilian defensive midfielder made a few vital interceptions with the Saints seeking a late equaliser.
The 30-year-old also showed his leadership and communication skills with his defensive teammates; Diogo Dalot, Raphael Varane, Lisandro Martinez and Tyrell Malacia, plus goalkeeper David De Gea. The 30-year-old arrived in Manchester on Monday ahead of the 2-1 victory over Liverpool.
It is expected that Casemiro will make his full debut once he has endured some more training sessions presumably the match against Southampton coming too soon to risk starting the former Real Madrid midfielder. Perhaps Thursday’s clash with Leicester City could see him start?
Bruno Fernandes scored the only goal in the victory over Southampton in the 55th minute of the match, assisted by Diogo Dalot. United and the Saints had plenty of chances to score but the quality of the finishing was problematic. Ten Hag, speaking about Casemiro, said:
“It was quite good for him to see the Premier League, it’s a different style. He has now a pre-season, he has played some games, he played one time 90 minutes, he is fit.
“He had a good pre-season with a lot of training sessions, we have to integrate him in a team and a way of playing and integrate him with his teammates.”
It was United’s first clean sheet of the season and their second victory in the Premier League – the first back-to-back victories in the league since February. United have seemingly turned another corner after their first two defeats of the season. Ten Hag, talking about the match, said:
“I think we defend as a team, I was quite happy with most of it, I saw room for improvement, the back four was a real unit with David De Gea, togetherness, but also the two in front, Scott [McTominay] and [Christian] Eriksen, did that really well. It’s a team performance.
United will face Leicester City at the King Power Stadium in the Premier League on Thursday evening, which is also transfer deadline day, before facing Arsenal at Old Trafford on Sunday with the opening UEFA Europa League match against Real Sociedad at Old Trafford the following Thursday.
Written by John Walker