Graeme Souness has sent out a warning to Manchester United star Casemiro after his latest red card ruled him out for four upcoming matches.
Casemiro signed for Man Utd during last summer’s transfer window. He was recruited for around £60m from Real Madrid after the Premier League failed to lure FC Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong to the club.
Some questioned United’s decision to spend such a significant amount of money on a player in his 30s, but Casemiro has largely silenced his doubters this term.
The Brazil international has been one of United’s best players as he has been able to transform their midfield.
Casemiro has been scrutinised over his disciplinary record, though. In 38 appearances for Man Utd, he has been booked nine times and sent off twice.
The 31-year-old returned a three-match ban earlier this month. His first game back was United’s 7-0 loss to Liverpool and he was sent off again a week later against Southampton.
He will miss Sunday’s FA Cup quarter-final against Fulham before United’s Premier League games against Newcastle United, Brentford and Everton.
Souness does not think Casemiro is a ‘malicious player’ but he thinks referees will now be ‘looking out for’ the Man Utd star.
‘I enjoyed the physical challenges that football presented during my career but was sent off just once in the English game,’ Souness wrote for The Daily Mail.
‘I was a relative kid playing for Middlesbrough and I threw a punch at Stan Ternent.
‘Stan, who went on to manage well at places such as Hull, Bury and Burnley, was a tough midfielder and he wouldn’t have flinched. I missed him anyway.
‘My point is that I knew how to keep myself in check, on the whole.
‘Casemiro at Manchester United is not a dirty player, either, but he does have a record. Consider this: in his last three-and-a-half seasons for Manchester United and Real Madrid, he has been booked 53 times! That is astonishing.
‘He has also been sent off three times, his latest red coming against Southampton last weekend.
‘As I say, I don’t think he is a malicious player but over the course of his 10-year career he has averaged about 15 yellows a season and you don’t rack up numbers like those by accident.
‘The upshot of his second red card for United in a short space of time is that when he returns from his four-game ban he will find referees looking out for him — and not in a good way.
‘In football, a reputation as being someone who likes to play on the edge of the law can be hard to shake.’
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