Manchester United headed into the September International break on the back of a disappointing 3-1 loss to Arsenal, but Rasmus Hojlund’s sparkling debut not only impressed the fans, but also received him some passionate praise from Casemiro.
The Danish forward, who was the Red Devils’ most expensive signing of the summer transfer window after being roped in for over £70 million, finally made his debut at the Emirates Stadium. He came on as a second-half substitute with around half an hour remaining, and proved to be a handful for the Arsenal defenders.
Hojlund used his physicality really well, tormenting Gabriel Magalhaes with his hold-up play and being seemingly robbed off a penalty in the second half too. At one point of his cameo, the young forward managed to help his side win a key duel and that even got his teammate Casemiro pumped up.
What did Casemiro do to Hojlund in his debut?
The Brazilian midfielder, known for being an emotional character on the pitch, appreciated his teammate’s good work and started to shake him by grabbing onto his jersey and shouting something at him, which looked to have confused the young forward a little bit.
Hojlund did not exactly score a goal or even create a chance at that point, but Casemiro didn’t seem to care and absolutely shook him out with his passionate celebration. The midfielder was clearly trying to motivate his younger teammate and ensure that he felt confident and was able to get rid of the nerves from his debut.
Ultimately, the Red Devils would go on to lost the match against Arsenal through two cruel stoppage time goals, but that interaction with Casemiro is probably one that Hojlund will remember for a long time.
Hojund reveals what Casemiro really told him
The 20-year-old forward was able to clarify exactly what had happened after the game and the conversation that the two shared during that emotional moment. He told reporters after the match: “He [Casemiro] just said something in Spanish, ‘vamos’ or something like that.
“He was happy that I gave the team perhaps a slightly different dynamic than what you get from Martial. He’s maybe a little more technically strong and looks down the gaps where I like to take the fights.
“After all, he hasn’t seen me play before, so he told me he was pleasantly surprised to see me play.”
It appears that Casemiro was just delighted to see the physicality and hard-working nature that Hojlund brought to the team after a frustrating display from Anthony Martial in the same game, in which the Frenchman just tested Aaron Ramsdale once and was unable to get anything really going in the attack.
On the toher hand, the Danish forward was able to open up things in his side’s attack and create more space for his teammates too by dragging defenders out of positions. His impressive off-the-ball movement and hold-up play, as well as general hard-working nature appears to have impressed Casemiro who shouted Vamos! (which means Come On! In English) as a war cry to drive him on to do even better.
It appears that Hojlund has been able to convince Casemiro, or any other fan not that associated with his playing style, that he has been the right signing for Erik ten Hag’s side. The Danish forward might’ve earned praises for a bright debut, but needs to now score goals regularly going forward to earn more consistent praise from his teammates and fans.