I played with Casemiro and know where the blame lies for Manchester United's problems

Casemiro of Manchester United reacts
Rivaldo has defended Casemiro amid his struggles at Manchester United this season -Credit:Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Brazil legend Rivaldo has defended Manchester United midfielder Casemiro amid his struggles under Erik ten Hag this season.

The 32-year-old has endured a poor run of form for much of 2023/24 after impressing during his debut campaign at Old Trafford. Casemiro joined in August 2022 from Real Madrid with his performances last season helping Ten Hag's side win the Carabao Cup and finish third in the Premier League.

But age and injuries appear to have caught up with Brazilian who has made 29 appearances across all competitions for United this term. United's defensive midfielder was at the centre of fierce criticism for his performance during Monday's 4-0 defeat at Crystal Palace.

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However, 2002 World Cup winner Rivaldo, has insisted that his compatriat cannot be blamed for United's problems under Ten Hag. He believes it was also the wrong decision for Casemiro to leave Madrid for Manchester.

"Casimiro is a great person, a friend of mine and someone I played with when I was at Sao Paulo," Rivaldo said via Betfair. "He had an amazing career at Real Madrid. In my opinion, it was the wrong decision for him to leave Real Madrid for Manchester United.

"I think he was living a beautiful story at Real Madrid, but of course, the financial side of things helped his decision.

"Manchester United are in a terrible moment, with so many injuries and Casemiro is a midfield player, not a striker or defender, so people criticise him playing out of position. But in my opinion, he is not to blame at all, because Manchester United are struggling massively on their own."