Casemiro suspended for Man Utd’s crunch trip to Arsenal
Manchester United have been dealt a huge blow ahead of Sunday’s Premier League clash with leaders Arsenal after Casemiro picked up a suspension for the crunch trip to the Emirates Stadium.
Casemiro, who has made such a phenomenal impact for United since his £60m transfer from Real Madrid, was shown a fifth yellow card of the season for a cynical foul on Wilfried Zaha during Wednesday night’s 1-1 draw with Crystal Palace.
United were leading 1-0 at the time and on course for what would have been a 10th consecutive win in all competitions. But in trying to prevent a Palace breakaway, Casemiro scythed down Zaha with a full-blooded high tackle that was perhaps fortunate not to be more harshly punished.
The Brazilian immediately showed his frustration with teammate Bruno Fernandes, giving a knowing look to the United skipper after he had ducked out of a challenge a few seconds earlier that contributed to the ball breaking to an advancing Zaha.
Casemiro otherwise put in an outstanding performance in south London, breaking up play in the centre of the pitch and giving his teammates a platform on which to perform.
His presence in recent months has highlighted the vital importance of possessing a world class defensive midfielder, but his yellow card and perhaps the realisation that he will miss the trip to Arsenal appeared to sufficiently stun United for Palace to finish stronger and snatch a point.
Moving from Real Madrid in the summer only a few months after winning a fifth career Champions League title, Casemiro didn’t initially command a starting place under Erik ten Hag while he was afforded time to learn the tactical system in place at his new club.
His last Premier League game as a substitute was the 6-3 annihilation at the hand of Manchester City in October, with United going to become the country’s form team once he became a starter.
United have already beaten Arsenal once this season, the only Premier League side to do so. But finding a way to repeat that against the Gunners on their own pitch will now be that much harder.
On this edition of TPL, Scott Saunders & Rob Blanchette discuss the Manchester derby victory, the upcoming fixture versus Crystal Palace, Wout Weghorst’s comments & more! If you can’t see this embed, click here to listen to the podcast!