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Europa League: Casemiro, the cement that unites United | Sports


Pep Guardiola, who watches everything from the other side of the city, commented a few days ago that the Man Utd He has returned: “He is one of the candidates to win the League”. Ten Hag, the Red Devils coach, listens to his colleague’s compliments, but is cautious: “We still have a lot to improve on,” he said after the weekend’s victory against West Ham (1-0) that he maintains. his team one point away from the Champions zone, and with a game that increasingly convinces his followers.

The team that lost against Real Sociedad in the Europa League (0-1) on a strange night, a few hours after Queen Elizabeth II died, he has taken a step forward, and one of the factors in the improvement of the English team is the consolidation in the middle of the field of Casemiro, the former Real Madrid player, who, like in the white club, is becoming the bond that adheres to all the players in United’s wide area, and the one that gives meaning to the transition in the game from defense to attack . “He is finding the partners in the right positions,” says Ten Hag. “Anticipating possession and losses, and seeing the passes between the lines,” the coach analyzes. “He makes a difference. He gives the team the opportunity to dominate inside and outside of possession because he knows how to read the game. He is the cement between the stones. In fact, the statistics do not lie. The only time United have lost with Casemiro as a starter was in the loss to Real Sociedad. Since then, the team has grown.

The real, who play with the advantage that at Anoeta (18.45, Movistar) a draw and even a narrow loss is enough for them to win first place in group E of the Europa League, they will receive a United that has changed a lot in terms of develop in the field. The English team only travels to San Sebastian with one loss, that of Anthony Martial, and has been improving its game and even its morale, now closer to optimism, after the results of recent weeks. In the last 10 games, six in the League and four in the Europa League, they have won seven, drawn two and lost the derby against City (6-3)when Guardiola still did not consider him the favorite for the title.

According to Paul Hirst, an analyst at The Times, “West Ham launched themselves on Sunday in search of an equalizer, they tried to go through the United defense, with long shots and also the aerial route. When that attack broke down, Casemiro was there to calmly start the transition. Apart from Maguire and Dalot, no one made more header clearances than Casemiro.

The Brazilian midfielder, whom Tite, the coach of his country, watched against West Ham from the Old Trafford stands, began to be judged in England for the 70 million euros that his signing cost, and also for the money that He is going to get paid in the coming years, although, in reality, his contract will only improve the one he had in Madrid if he meets a series of personal and collective objectives.

However, the perspective has changed, and the stands begin to appreciate him for his football, as well as the dressing room, where in a short time he has become one of the references for young people, and a leader among all players.

Hirst points out in one of his last articles in reference to Casemiro. “Let no one expect Ten Hag to give Casemiro a rest anytime soon. Right now he is irreplaceable.” At United the waters are calmer, even in relation to Cristiano Ronaldo, who after being sidelined for a game after leaving the locker room early during the clash against Tottenham, has returned to the starting lineup. His differences with the coach are still there, but the upward march of the team seems to cover everything.

La Real de Imanol will have to use all their senses to win: “They have evolved, but so have we,” says the coach. “With the players they have, it’s logical that they go up.”

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