Manchester United produced a dogged defensive display at Anfield as they held Liverpool to a goalless draw in the Premier League on Sunday.
Considering the injury list, it was a creditable display which came about mainly due to manager Erik ten Hag replicating last season’s model which has served him so well in the past.
This season the Dutchman has tried to be more proactive in trying to pinch the ball off of the opposition higher up the pitch, thereby sacrificing balance in the midfield which has allowed opponents to score plenty of goals.
United ended up conceding the joint second-most goals in the Champions League group stages and have let in three or more goals nine times this campaign.
One player who has struggled in this new tactical system is Casemiro. The Brazilian focussed too much on the attacking side of his game, thereby allowing the opposition midfielders to run the game.
The 31-year-old still has the ability to shield the defence and allow his team to counter through his underrated passing but he simply cannot play in the manager’s current set-up having lost a yard of pace.
If Ten Hag remains stubborn and sticks to his guns, a change in scenery is likely for the Brazilian. Whether United can afford to sell him in January remains to be seen.
Sofyan Amrabat has not managed to fill the void in the absence of Casemiro who has been offered to Paris Saint-Germain while links with Bayern Munich had also appeared.
As per Spanish publication Fichajes, PSG will be joined by Saudi clubs Al-Hilal and Al-Nassr in the race for the defensive midfielder in January.
“In the frenzy of the winter transfer window, three prominent clubs are willing to compete for the services of Casemiro, the Brazilian midfielder who has left an indelible mark on Manchester United since his arrival.
“Al-Hilal and Al-Nassr have expressed strong interest in the 31-year-old. They are rumored to be preparing tempting offers to secure his signature when the January transfer window opens, like PSG.”
The report also mentions that the Red Devils are not actively looking to sell the four-time Champions League winner but his considerable wages and his age means a parting could become a reality.