Casemiro reveals key piece of advice he’s given Man Utd’s Kobbie Mainoo | Football

Kobbie Mainoo can be one of the Premier League’s top midfielders, says Casemiro (Picture: Getty0

Manchester United star Casemiro says he is ‘always trying to tell’ Kobbie Mainoo to keep his head down and ‘work hard’ as ‘things aren’t easy’ in the career of an elite level footballer.

Mainoo, 18, who joined the Red Devils at the age of nine, has been one of the shining lights of an otherwise mixed campaign for his boyhood club.

After being handed his first-team debut in the Carabao Cup in early 2023, the midfielder has gone from strength to strength, making 15 appearances in all competitions this term and netting twice.

Perhaps the standout moment of Mainoo’s young career to date came in the dying moments of United’s 4-3 thriller with Wolves earlier this month, with the youngster scoring a dramatic solo wondergoal in the seventh minute of stoppage time to seal all three points.

The teenager, widely tipped to make Gareth Southgate’s next England squad, has started every match of United’s seven-game unbeaten run and is expected to continue his run in the side when Erik ten Hag’s men welcome Fulham to Old Trafford this weekend.

Casemiro has formed a promising partnership with Mainoo since returning from injury last month and the veteran Brazilian expects big things from his ‘exceptional’ team-mate as long as he remains on the right path.

‘First off, I’d like to congratulate Kobbie. He’s only 18 and he’s already a starter at a club like Manchester United,’ Casemiro told United’s official website.

Manchester United star Kobbie Mainoo celebrates

The teenager has been a mainstay across United’s unbeaten run (Picture: Getty)

‘It’s not easy, there’s a lot of pressure. But I think United will have a top player for the next years, easily.

‘He’s a top player. He’s exceptional. He’s a humble, hard-working player.

‘He knows how to listen. He’s a great player.’

Casemiro returned from injury last month (Picture: Getty)

Casemiro added: ‘Since I play alongside him, I know Manchester United will have one of the best midfielders in the Premier League for the next years, easily.

‘I think we have to recognise his value. He’s a great kid. I’m very happy that he’s on our side.

‘As long as he keeps his head on straight, just as he’s doing now, I think we’ll have a great player for many, many years here at United.’

Mainoo is being tipped for a spot in Southgate’s Euros squad (Picture: Getty)

Casemiro warned Mainoo he has a ‘long and tough journey’ ahead but believes the teen has the maturity and attitude to make the most of his undoubted potential.

‘Obviously, it’s a long and tough journey,’ the former Real Madrid man went on.

‘I always try to tell him this: that things aren’t easy, that you always have to work hard. You always need to want more and more. That’s what football is.

‘But you can tell he has his head on straight. He’s a great player. Without a doubt, we’ll have a great player on our side for a long time.’

United sit sixth in the league ahead of their clash with Fulham this weekend (Picture: Getty)

Casemiro continued: ‘You always try to give tips and talk about your experience, but I always say that actions offer the best experience.

‘The examples you set and your actions, on and off the pitch, are the most important things. That’s what I always try to tell them.

‘I try to be a role model for them – on and off the pitch.’

Casemiro has taken Mainoo under his wing at United (Picture: Getty)

Earlier this month, United head coach Ten Hag explained how Casemiro had taken Mainoo under his wing.

‘For Kobbie Mainoo, he can learn a lot from it and that togetherness, that bond… also Kobbie is very coachable and Casemiro has so much experience,’ the Dutchman told reporters.

‘Kobbie will learn a lot from it and that can even accelerate his development.

‘So yeah, I’m happy to have him back and when they can play together I think they can take benefits from each other.’

Asked if Casemiro has developed a bond with Mainoo, the United manager replied: ‘Absolutely.

‘Casemiro takes also that responsibility. He’s talking to him, I see it in the dressing room, I see it on the pitch, on the training ground and also in games.

‘Of course, he’s looking at his own game but he’s also trying to help and support Kobbie Mainoo.’

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