Casemiro in ‘race against clock’ to be fit for Manchester derby, says Erik ten Hag

'A race against the clock.'

Casemiro in ‘race against clock’ to be fit for Manchester derby, says Erik ten Hag
Manchester United v Brentford FC - Premier League
Casemiro has been dealing with an ankle injury (Picture: Getty Images)

Erik ten Hag could not confirm whether Casemiro will be fit for this weekend’s Manchester derby or not, saying it is a ‘race against the clock’ for the Brazilian.

The midfielder has been out with an ankle injury, missing the Red Devils’ victories over Sheffield United and FC Copenhagen over the last week.

The 31-year-old is hoping to be back to take on Manchester City at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon, but Ten Hag is not certain he will be available.

The Dutchman was also non-committal over Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s availability, saying the full-back has returned to training after a thigh problem, but not stating whether he will be able to start.

‘Aaron [Wan-Bissaka] was training today, Casa is a race against the clock, not 100 per cent,’ the Manchester United manager told a press conference on Friday.

It has been an injury-plagued campaign so far for Ten Hag’s squad and even if Casemiro and Wan-Bissaka do return on Sunday, there will still be a number of absentees.

Lisandro Martinez, Tyrell Malacia, Luke Shaw and Amad Traore all remain sidelined through injury, while Jadon Sancho is still unavailable due to disciplinary issues.

Manchester United go into the clash with their local rivals on a three-match winning streak, but Ten Hag was still addressing his side’s lack of goals this season ahead of the derby.

The Red Devils have managed just 11 in nine league games and Ten Hag knows they have to be sharper in front of goal.

‘The cooperation has to click,’ he said. ‘But we showed this week some examples where there are so many we have overload positions, going in overload position to the opponent’s goal and we don’t net or don’t even hit the target.

‘We don’t have time to train this, we give some coaching and I’m convinced with the quality from our players that they will go and score more goals.’

MORE : Manchester United in talks with FA over controversial Alejandro Garnacho post, confirms Erik ten Hag

MORE : Erik ten Hag told to apologise to Manchester United star by Tim Sherwood

For more stories like this, check our sport page.

Follow Metro Sport for the latest news on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.