Casemiro sent off for putting his hands around Will Hughes' neck in moment of madness
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Manchester United midfielder Casemiro has been sent off for putting his hands around Crystal Palace midfielder Will Hughes' neck in a moment of madness.
The Red Devils were in control at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon thanks to goals from Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford in either half.
Fernandes converted a penalty in the first half after Hughes handled inside the area before Rashford added a second with his 10th league goal of the season.
United looked comfortable going into the final 20 minutes before a huge melee broke out just off the pitch. Palace winger Jeffrey Schlupp pushed United star Antony into an advertising hoarding, which saw every player get involved.
Schlupp received a booking from referee Andre Marriner which looked to be the end of the story. That is until VAR got involved.
VAR caught Casemiro with his hands wrapped around Hughes as they picked the bones of the encounter. Marriner watched the incident back on the monitor and gave the 30-year-old his marching orders shortly after.
It wasn't the way Casemiro wanted his first Premier League game back after serving a suspension against Arsenal for accumulating too many yellow cards to go down.
Casemiro will now miss back-to-back games with Leeds United and the visit of Leicester City later this month. His next domestic game will be the Carabao Cup final against Newcastle United on February 26.
The Brazil international's red card changed the complexion of the whole game. Palace got one back minutes later through Schlupp with a fine left-footed finish.
United are currently light in midfield due to injuries to Donny van de Beek, Christian Eriksen and Scott McTominay. They completed the signing of Marcel Sabitzer on a season-long loan from Bayern Munich on transfer deadline day. Sabitzer made his debut shortly after Casemiro went down the tunnel.
Earlier this week, manager Erik ten Hag addressed fears his side could burn-out given their congested fixture list. United will play two games a week for the rest of this month due to their FA Cup, Europa League and Carabao Cup commitments.
Ten Hag prefers a smaller squad and gave his reasons in his pre-match press conference.
He said: "It is for every player – and Bruno is also playing every game. But those players are capable of it and that's why they are so good.
You can always rely on them as a club and that's why they've won so many trophies. When Casemiro was at Real Madrid, I also think he played so many games."
United held on to win 2-1 and moved up to third in the Premier League ahead of Newcastle, who face West Ham United in the late kick-off.