Raphael Varane

Varane highlights United's squad depth

Monday 13 March 2023 13:00

Raphael Varane says Manchester United have the squad to cope without the suspended Casemiro.

Varane’s former Real Madrid team-mate is to serve a four-match domestic ban, after being sent off for the second time this season during the first half of Sunday’s 0-0 draw with Southampton at Old Trafford.

Casemiro will, therefore, miss the Emirates FA Cup meeting with Fulham next Sunday, as well as April league clashes with Newcastle United, Brentford and Everton.

While Rapha admits it’s a disappointment that our no.18 won’t now be able to feature domestically until the middle of next month, he believes the Reds do have the quality within our ranks to replace him.

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The Brazilian will have to serve a suspension following his red card against Southampton.

Scott McTominay was brought on in place of Wout Weghorst to cover the midfield gap shortly after Casemiro had received his marching orders.

Bruno Fernandes featured in a more withdrawn role than usual on Sunday, while Fred also entered the fray as a substitute late on.

Marcel Sabitzer has missed the last two games through injury and we await an update on the Austrian’s fitness – an imminent return would provide an obvious boost in Casemiro’s absence.

“He's a player who's very important for us. He brings balance to the team and to the squad,” Varane said of Casemiro after our meeting with the Saints.

“But we have a great squad and we have to find another balance without him, but we have good players in every position on the pitch and we're ready for the next games.

“I think he was very disappointed because nobody wants to get out of the pitch before the end but, as I say, it's part of football.

“It was obviously very disappointing but we can focus on the next games and that's it.”

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United’s next fixture sees us travel to Seville to take on Real Betis – a game which Casemiro is available for.

Following last week’s 4-1 victory over Manuel Pellegrini’s side in Manchester, Varane is eager to get back to European action and regain the winning rhythm we've discovered in 2023.

“I think if you take apart [away] the game against Liverpool, we were in a good moment and good results, so we have to keep the confidence,” he added.

“Obviously, we want a good result to keep the rhythm. I think the winning mentality is here in this group.

“We want to win every game so we have to fight and be ready for Thursday.”