Ahead of English Premier League clash between Arsenal and Manchester United,football pundit, Paul Merson, has stated that he does not see the Erik ten Hag led side winning without Casemiro.
The Brazilian midfielder will miss the trip to the Emirates after picking up a yellow card in Wednesday night’s draw at Crystal Palace.
Merson, who spoke on Skysports, said that the absence of Casemiro would be hugely felt in the team given his influence since his arrival from Real Madrid.
Casemiro has been able to forge a formidable partnership with Christian Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes at the heart of United’s midfield, one which has seen them record a run of a nine-game winning streak that had propelled the club to top three on the table and possibly title contenders.
Merson stated that the void left by Casemiro would give Arsenal’s captain, Martin Odegaard, a free play in the midfield, given the presence of Thomas Partey, who would be a cover for him.
“He is massive for them. He would have looked after [Martin] Odegaard.
“Casemiro breaks up the play, I can not see Manchester United beating Arsenal without him. They might get a draw, might.
“I really thought with Casemiro in the team, Arsenal suited Manchester United.
“I thought they would sit back, defend, and then counter.
“I don’t see that now without him. He is that highly rated by me.
“He is that good, so I don’t give Man United that much of a chance,” he stated.
Meanwhile, United’s coach, Erik Ten Hag, is positive that his team can defeat The Gunners at the Emirates without Casemiro.
Speaking after the draw at Palace, he said, “We absolutely wanted to win this game. That’s why we need them all, and it’s an unlucky moment.
“But last time we beat Arsenal without Casemiro, so we have the squad, and we have to fill that gap.”
A victory over Arsenal on Sunday will see the Red Devils reduce the gap between both teams to five points; while a victory for the Gunners would see them solidify their premier league title charge this season
The gunners have only lost one EPL match this season, which was Arteta’s men’s first leg tie against United at Old Trafford.
A loss for the league leader would make the league a three-hourse-race, as second-place Manchester City, would be hoping that their bitter rivals bag all three points to reduce the gap between then an Arsenal.
With Eddie How’s Newcastle United, closely following the pack in fourth place, they could also be i the frame for the title contention.