Real Madrid have been dealt with a huge blow ahead of the team’s La Liga clash against Osasuna on Wednesday night. Defensive midfielder Casemiro has been ruled out of the mid-week game due to a muscle injury in his left thigh, with concerns that the injury could potentially hamper the Brazilian’s chances of featuring in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League semifinal against Manchester City, which will be played at the Etihad Stadium.
However, Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has provided an update regarding the 30-year old’s availability for the away game at the Premier League champions.
Casemiro should be ready for Real Madrid’s match vs Manchester City
“Casemiro has a week to recover. He will be back for the Champions League game against [Manchester] City,” revealed Ancelotti, much to the relief of the Madridistas.
Although Casemiro has been inconsistent since the turn of the year, his performance against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the quarterfinal of the Champions League at the end of last month should be taken into consideration. People are thinking about whether Tchouameni should be a must-sign so that he can provide Casemiro with some competition, but it’s fair to say that Casemiro has the ability and talent to start even beyond the signing of Tchouameni, should it happen.
Casemiro provides balance to the team, and although he plays irresponsibly sometimes, his presence does provide an extra layer of protection to the defence. Take the Sevilla game for example. Toni Kroos played as a holding midfielder, or a 6, and the team suffered in the first half. Of course, it’s not right to compare Kroos, a central midfielder who excels at distribution and controlling the tempo of the game, to Casemiro, a defensive midfielder with a completely different set of traits and roles on the pitch.
However, Casemiro can come in handy to cut down those passing lanes, make necessary interventions, put in a last-ditch tackle, or even provide another outlet during set-pieces on the other end of the pitch when the team needs a goal. Real Madrid will be hoping that Casemiro returns in time and gains the fitness he needs to start against Manchester City at the Etihad.
In addition to Casemiro, Marcelo, Ferland Mendy, Mariano Díaz, and Luka Jović will miss tomorrow’s game due to injuries. Luka Modrić has been rested, while Eden Hazard’s latest ankle surgery means he’ll be out on the sidelines for at least a few more weeks.