This is Real Madrid’s most underrated hero in the clutch

Real Madrid Squad (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid Squad (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid played out a thriller of a game against Barcelona in the semi-finals of the Supercopa. They came out on top, defeating the Blaugranes 3-2 in extra-time. It was a fantastic game of football for the neutral, because Barcelona played a lot better than everyone thought they did, and Real Madrid, at least defensively, weren’t as good as they have been this season, which is mainly because of David Alaba’s absence and the impact it had on other players.

But Real Madrid got the job done and now are in the final, which would take place on Saturday, against either Atletico Madrid or Athletic Club. There were a bunch of players that had fantastic games, but perhaps one of those players, who is generally very, very underrated in big games, is Casemiro.

Real Madrid can always, always count on Casemiro to perform well in big games

Casemiro genuinely gave in by far his best performance of the season against Barcelona, and mostly was able to pull things off that he would, on an off day, mess up. The Brazillian was usually great with the ball, and he made runs from his own half to Barcelona’s on multiple occasions. He was as important as ever on the defensive end of the game, and had so many crucial blocks and interventions, especially in the second half and in extra-time.

He also had a great run in the build-up to the winning goal. It’s hard to imagine Real Madrid winning this game if it wasn’t for his heroics. Yes, maybe he could’ve defended the cross better in the build-up to Barcelona’s second goal, but Casemiro’s game was otherwise near-perfect.

After the game, I saw mentions of Karim Benzema, Vinicius Jr, Thibaut Courtois as the heroes of the game, but not many people talked about Casemiro, which kind of annoyed me. Now, look, I have criticised Casemiro many, many times, and most of those criticisms were justified.

I think he’s very important to this Real Madrid side and that’s why I want him to perform well in every game. We haven’t really seen a lot of that this season, but whenever I did see a good game, I always had heaps of praise for Casemiro. At the end of the day, you have to give props where props are due.

Most people don’t do that, though, and I think it is a recurring theme. People criticise Casemiro whenever he plays really bad or even has a mediocre game, myself included, but then when the Brazillian actually plays really well, no one really talks about it because they don’t notice it. They notice the bad things because that’s what catches their attention, but the good parts are sometimes ignored and that’s maybe something that needs to change.

Casemiro, in big games, and especially in clutch moments, has been incredible. If you look at Madrid’s last 20 games against “big” teams or games that are very important, you can bet on Casemiro performing well in most of those games. But, no one really sees him play that well sometimes due to a lack of attention to detail.

Next. 2 positives and 2 negatives from Real Madrid’s 2-3 win over Barcelona. dark

The truth is, Casemiro is one of the best big-game players around, and yes, he has his limitations, his bad games, but when it matters most, you can definitely count on him. If there’s one thing that Casemiro has that many other players don’t, it’s that. The man just doesn’t feel any pressure mentally, and that’s always a good thing.