‘Never gave Wilson a kick’ – Man Utd player’s ‘sadistic streak’ hailed after ‘relishing’ Prem ‘physicality’

Jason Soutar
Carabao Cup final - Lisandro Martinez celebrates

Garth Crooks has waxed lyrical about Manchester United duo Lisandro Martinez and Casemiro after the Red Devils’ Carabao Cup success.

You might be aware that Erik ten Hag’s side ended their long wait for a trophy by beating Newcastle United at Wembley on Sunday.

Summer signing Casemiro opened the scoring for the Red Devils thanks to a wonderful Luke Shaw cross before Marcus Rashford doubled their lead.

It was a fairly comfortable afternoon for United, who claimed their first domestic trophy since their Carabao Cup triumph under Jose Mourinho in 2017.

Credit to the United players, who emphasised their desire to win more trophies during celebrations and have their eyes set on glory in the Premier League, FA Cup and Europa League this season.

Goal scorer Casemiro was singled out before and after the match having won every trophy under the sun during his time with Real Madrid.

His experience was telling on the day and he has earned a place in Garth Crooks’ team of the week.

The former striker has credited the Brazilian for showing ‘determination’ to help contribute at Old Trafford, as opposed to sitting “on his fat contract living on easy street”.

“What a professional Casemiro has turned out to be for United,” Crooks wrote. “He could, at the age of 31 and having achieved all the success he has in his career with Real Madrid, sat on his fat contract living on easy street.

“Instead he has come to Old Trafford determined to transform the fortunes of a club that was on its knees when he arrived. The football was dire, the dressing room toxic and results poor.

“The Brazilian has slowly got his team-mates playing again and now winning trophies. His performance against Newcastle in the EFL Cup final was a leader’s performance.

“Casemiro has done precisely what Cristiano Ronaldo failed to do and that was unite a dressing room – and he is acquiring special status very quickly among the United fans.”

Another player who has brought success from their previous club to Old Trafford is ex-Ajax defender Martinez.

Ten Hag signed Martinez in the summer, reuniting with the Argentina international, and he has beaten the height allegations while showing a “sadistic streak”, Crooks says.

“It would appear Argentine players are back in fashion in the Premier League,” said Crooks. “There is also something of their 1978 World Cup-winning captain Daniel Passarella in Martinez too.

“He’s roughly the same height as the Argentine legend, with the same will to win, and Passarella’s sadistic streak to go with it.

“Against a Newcastle side desperate to give their fanatical fans something from the EFL Cup final, United centre-back Martinez never gave striker Callum Wilson a kick.

“When he first arrived on the scene at Old Trafford from Ajax, I thought he might struggle with the physicality of the Premier League – in fact he has relished it.

“He is another player who Erik ten Hag knew could handle the stage at United and now has his first trophy with the club to prove it.”

READ MORE: 16 Conclusions on Man Utd winning Carabao Cup: Newcastle, Ten Hag, Casemiro, Karius…