Life is worse without Casemiro

Madrid have only won one of the four games in which the Brazilian has been absent this season and it was against Zaragoza, Second.


Casemiro does not rotate. The Brazilian is a key player in the Zinedine Zidane team for which the French coach has no replacement. The 14 is the footballer who adds more minutes with the white shirt this season in all competitions. He has 3,390 'played, 91.1% of those possible in the 41 games Real Madrid has played. Casemiro has played 37 of those 41 matches, all complete and including overtime in the final of the Spanish Super Cup against Atlético.

Against Mallorca, Casemiro will miss his fifth game of this season as he completes his second yellow cycle in the League. For that same reason, he was not at the end of 2019 against Athletic at the Bernabéu. A week earlier the clash against Valencia at Mestalla was lost to guarantee their presence in the Camp Nou Classic. The other two games have been in the Cup: against Zaragoza and Real Sociedad. And before the first three in which Casemiro was absent, Madrid suffered a common denominator: he failed to get the games ahead. Both draws in league commitments and defeat and elimination against Real in the tournament rooms of the KO.

Some of Madrid's most symbolic defeats in recent years have occurred in the absence of Casemiro. Last season it was not against Betis, in Vallecas or Eibar, the latter the first major setback of the 'Solari era'. Alavés' goal that left Lopetegui touched came without the Brazilian on the pitch. And the previous season (17-18) was also not, for example, in the quarterfinal tie against Leganes that the cucumber team took with a historic victory (1-2) on the return leg at the Bernabéu.

Two defeats without Casemiro have marked the Brazilian's career and, in some way, the recent history of Real Madrid. After five league games in a row as a starter, Benítez dispensed with him in the eleven of the first (and last) Classic of the coach against Barcelona. The azulgranas thrashed 0-4 at the Bernabéu. And Casemiro began a particular three-month desert journey until after another defeat by Madrid, in a derby against Atlético at the Bernabéu, Zidane gave him a new alternative.

"I remember that, when Zizou came, the first five games I didn't play with him. And I say: 'What about this one? It can't be, that this spoke very highly of me. And I went to his office and told him : "Mister, we are in January and I want to have a leading role. I want to play, mister." And I remember very well that he said with these words: "Case, you calm, when you start playing you will never stop playing more, "remembered the midfielder in Universo Valdano.

He started playing and didn't quit. Just as Madrid did not stop winning in that League (although Barça's advantage was insurmountable to hunt them down) and began a glorious historical cycle in the Champions League. And since then, only Kroos, Ramos and Varane have played more minutes under Zizou.

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