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Claude Makelele claims Manchester United star Casemiro is a better defensive midfielder than he was

Former Chelsea midfielder Claude Makelele has admitted that Manchester United star Casemiro is a better player in the position than he was.

Makele controversially went a step further by also suggesting that the Brazilian is better than Red Devils legend Roy Keane.

The ex-France international had the defensive midfield position named after him following his exploits in the role during his illustrious playing career.

Goal asked Makele to stay quiet until a better defensive midfielder than him was mentioned, and he kept mute while Daniele De Rossi, Declan Rice, Joshua Kimmich, Gennaro Gattuso, Keane, Javier Mascherano and Edgar Davids were mentioned.

He broke his silence when Casemiro’s name was called, and he explained why. “Yes,” Makelele replied when the interviewer expressed his surprise at his answer.

“Because he’s young – because it’s a new generation and reminds me of my generation.”

In his heyday at Real Madrid, the Red Devils star was arguably the best defensive midfielder in the world winning three La Liga titles and five Champions League titles in 11 seasons.

Casemiro moved to Man United in August 2022 for £60 million and has had some good games.

However, the 32-year-old has been unable to replicate the heroics from his Madrid days with United.

He had Toni Kroos and Luka Modric playing alongside him at the La Liga club, and Man United do not have players of that same mould in their ranks.

Madrid had a distinct style of play with Casemiro in midfield and were a star-studded squad during the years he spent with them. He has not been able to enjoy the same luxuries under manager Erik ten Hag.

He is undoubtedly one of the best midfielders in the Premier League given the quality and experience he brings to the table.

Despite this, not many people will agree that he is currently better than Rice or Keane in his playing days as Makelele suggested.

A better playing system will likely get better output from Casemiro, but it remains to be seen if he has a future at Man United with the club set to make major squad changes this summer.