Casemiro is the worlds best defensive midfielder, says Gilberto SilvaJune 12,2018 bysquawka.com
Real Madrid`s Casemiro is the "best defensive midfielder in the world" according to former Brazilian international Gilberto Silva.
The former Arsenal midfielder thinks the Madrid star is one of the under-appreciated players that will be heading to Russia with the Selecao in four days` time.
Although more established stars like Philippe Coutinho, Gabriel Jesus and Neymar have tended to grab the headlines in the build-up to the tournament, Silva believes that Casemiro is key to the way Tite wants his side to play in Russia.
His presence in front of the back four gives more creative talents the freedom to get forward and produce the kind of football that Brazilian fans have come to expect throughout the years.
Players like Neymar will be key if the Brazil are to hit their minimum expectations of a last four finish but Gilberto Silva also thinks that Casemiro`s presences helps Brazil get the best out of their other midfielder maestro, Paulinho.
"For me, Casemiro is one of the best, if not the best in the defensive midfield position," the former Brazil midfielder told Sky Sports.
"Since my retirement all the players that have played in this role for Brazil have played differently. With all respect to all of the other players that have played there, their style was completely different. At one point we had Paulinho playing with Ramires and they have the same style of play.
"Neither of them played in the holding midfield role. However, now, with Casemiro, they have someone who holds the position and protects the back four. It frees up the attacking players.
"It also frees up Paulinho. He can attack more and the combination between the two players works well. Casemiro`s role gives Paulinho the freedom to move forward and that`s good for Brazil because he`s very good when he gets himself into the box to get on the end of crosses."
Casemiro made 48 appearances for Real Madrid in all competitions this season. He also played the full 90 minutes in his side`s 3-1 Champions League final victory over Liverpool that saw the Brazilian help prevent Liverpool`s creative talents from having much of a say.
Brazil start their World Cup campaign against Switzerland on June 17 before taking on Costa Rica and Serbia.