Man Utd injury blow strikes hours before Liverpool FA Cup showdown handing Ten Hag dilemma | Football | Sport

have been hit with a painful injury setback ahead of their meeting with later today (Sunday), with seemingly ruled out after being replaced in the Brazilian national team squad.

Teenager Kobbie Mainoo is a shoo-in to start at the base of midfield, but manager Erik ten Hag is faced with a dilemma in terms of who to pair him with. Scott McTominay, Sofyan Amrabat and Christian Eriksen are all contenders, while Mason Mount has recently returned to first-team training.

Casemiro has played the full 90 minutes in each of United’s last three matches, scoring the winner in last month’s victory at Nottingham Forest, and his experience would have been useful for the Red Devils against their bitter rivals.

While there has been no confirmation from United ahead of Sunday’s match at Old Trafford, Brazil manager Dorival Junior suggested that Casemiro will not be available after replacing him in his latest international squad.

“We have just received a report from Dr. Rodrigo Lasmar,” explained the 61-year-old. “From a pre-list made by the Brazilian National Team’s technical committee with 50 names, 13 of them were already away due to injury at their clubs. Unfortunately, we also lost Casemiro. Therefore, Pepe, from Porto, a native striker who now plays as a midfielder, is called up.”

The FA Cup represents United’s last realistic chance at silverware this season, having crashed out in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup and the group stage of the Champions League.

Although Ten Hag has been stung by the prospective absence of Casemiro, United’s injury crisis is starting to abate with Mount joint by Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Harry Maguire and, perhaps most importantly, Rasmus Hojlund in first-team training.

Mount, a £55million signing from Chelsea last summer, has only started seven games this season due to recurring injury problems and disappointing form. But Ten is adamant the 25-year-old will eventually come good in a Red Devils shirt.

“I’m convinced he’ll be a key player,” stated the Dutchman earlier this week. “He didn’t have the chance to prove this point. But he will be a very good player for United.

“It’s been really unfortunate and disappointing for him but also for us when you have such a class player in the middle and you can’t play him. I am sure that when he is fit and playing he will get into that rhythm, he will contribute to a successful Man United. I’m sure.”

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