Erik ten Hag has praised Casemiro’s “magnificent” contribution to Manchester United, stressing that he has filled a critical need in the club.
Following his £70 million ($79 million) summer transfer from Real Madrid, the Brazilian took some time to adjust to his new surroundings. He is already playing up to his reputation as one of the finest defensive midfielders in the game, and Ten Hag believes his performance against Tottenham with Fred showed that he is worth every penny the Red Devils paid for him in the summer.
“Definitely, there is a link between them, that is clear. Casemiro is now at his side of him and we see him developing and proving why we signed him. He is growing from game to game.”
The Dutch tactician added: “You see how important a player like he is for the squad, he was magnificent and the performance shows the club’s needed someone like him. He is showing that in the last few games, what he can do for the team.”
Casemiro didn’t make his Premier League debut until a 2-1 victory against Everton on October 9. He returned the coach’s faith with an assist for Cristiano Ronaldo and has since remained in Ten Hag’s lineup, assisting United in remaining in contention for a top-four spot.
When Manchester United meet Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, the midfielder will be eager to continue his excellent run.
The former Real Madrid general joined United in August but had a tough start, with Scott McTominay’s outstanding performances keeping him out of the starting lineup.
He’s already started three straight games in all competitions, and he’ll start a fourth against Newcastle on Sunday since McTominay is banned.
Speaking prior of the match, Casemiro praised Ten Hag for his “passion” and “ambition,” claiming that these attributes are shared by his coaching staff.
Casemiro and Manchester United
“They always want to win, they never get complacent. They’re always looking to do something new, always wanting to make a difference in games.
“I believe Manchester United have a great manager, it was there to see at Ajax, I think he’s doing a good job here.”
It goes without saying that United’s acquisition of Casemiro was unexpected, but it was also vitally important. Casemiro is one of the greatest in his position, as seen by his few starts.
The hope was always that he would gradually be entrenched into the side, even if it took longer than some would have expected.
He’s in terrific form right now, and he’ll be trying to keep it going into this winter’s World Cup, which Brazil is one of the favourites to win.