Erik ten Hag expected to hand Casemiro first Premier League start against Everton
Like his former Real Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo, the Brazilian started United’s 6-3 hammering against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on the bench.
The 30-year-old entered the fray against the Citizens on the hour mark when United were trailing 4-1.
But fellow five-time Champions League winner Casemiro was brought on to make his fourth substitute appearance in the Premier League.
Casemiro expected to start against Everton
The midfield enforcer is yet to start a Premier League game for the twenty-time league champions, and the former Ajax manager explained that his side embarking on a winning run, following the arrival of the Brazilian had played a significant part in him starting top-flight games on the bench, as had Scott McTominay’s form.
“On the day we signed him [Casemiro], we started to win and it’s about the team,” Ten Hag said.
“The team is doing really well, it’s not against Casemiro, it’s for, in this case, Scott McTominay.
“He performed great in the team and then we get into a run, but I’m sure it will be important for us in the long and short-term. He [Casemiro] will find himself in the team but it has to come in a natural way.”
But Casemiro’s only start this season for the Reds came in the 1-0 defeat against Real Sociedad in our Europa League opener.
The serial winner, who is one of the best defensive midfielders in the world, has only played 82 minutes of Premier League football since securing his big-money £60m move to Old Trafford.
Casemiro potential option at centre-back?
United face Cypriot side Omonia Nicosia in the Europa League on Thursday before travelling to Goodison Park on Sunday night.
It seems that Casemiro could be set to make his first Premier League start against the Toffees, the question is where will he play, and who will he replace?
McTominay and Christian Eriksen had been a rock-solid partnership prior to Sunday’s mauling.
Another option Ten Hag could be considering exploring depending on the diagnosis of Raphael Varane’s injury is playing Casemiro at centre-back.
United’s number 18 has played at centre-back five times during his club career, the most recent of which came in Real Madrid’s 4-0 win against Espanyol back in April.
The defensive midfielder could slot in alongside Lisandro Martinez ahead of Victor Lindelof if Ten Hag sees that as a potential option.
Casemiro is comfortable in possession and has the ability to sniff out danger, it would also allow Ten Hag to retain McTominay and Eriksen as his midfield pairing.
But it seems Casemiro is set to make his first Premier League start against Everton regardless, and it will be interesting to see how the Dutchman shuffles his pack to get the 65-time Brazil international into the side.