Casemiro finally explains why he grabbed Man Utd teammate Rasmus Hojlund | Football

The 20-year-old only has one goal in 15 Premier League appearances (Pictures: Getty)

Casemiro has defended Rasmus Hojlund’s slow start to life at Manchester United, while he has finally explained his rather enthusiastic grapple with the striker against Arsenal.

The 20-year-old swapped Atalanta for Old Trafford in a £72million switch in the summer but has struggled to live up to that whopping price tag so far, netting just once in the Premier League in 15 appearances.

That goal came in his last outing against Aston Villa on Boxing Day, some four months after joining, but he was unable to build on it after picking up an illness that ruled him out of United’s 2-1 defeat to Nottingham Forest.

Despite his domestic struggles in front of goal, Hojlund netted five times in the Champions League while he has won over fans – and members of the squad – with his general work rate and tenacity.

Casemiro has also been impressed with his young team-mate’s attitude and believes he has a big future at the club, while he also revealed why he grabbed Hojlund by the collar and passionately and appreciatively yelled at him against Arsenal early on in the season.

Speaking to the club’s official website, the Brazilian said: ‘At the end of the day, he’s just a kid, so we shouldn’t be putting a lot of pressure on him.

‘A lot of people think that he should be coming in and scoring 30-odd goals right away. He’s still young and this is his first season in the Premier League.

Manchester United striker Ramus Hojlund

Hojlund is United’s joint top scorer alongside Scott McTominay (Picture: Getty)

‘Regarding the footage you mentioned [when Casemiro grabbed Hojlund by the shirt], I was really happy with his attitude!

‘The thing is, it’s really difficult when you come on in such a demanding game, as games against Arsenal are.

‘When he entered the fray he contributed a lot, changing our dynamic, so I tried to express to him just how I was feeling.

‘He’s definitely playing better in every game and he’s working really hard. Rasmus is a dedicated lad and he’s keen to kick on.

‘He’ll be a great player for this club and, with the ambitions he has, he could define an era at Manchester United.’

Hojlund has now shaken off his illness and is in line to make his FA Cup debut against Wigan on Monday night, while Casemiro is stepping up his own recovery from injury and has returned to training.


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