By Nnamdi Onyeagwara

21st Aug, 2022 | 7:10pm

West Ham captain Rice a better option than Casemiro - Michael Dawson

West Ham captain Declan Rice should have been approached before Casemiro by Manchester United, according to Michael Dawson.

The Red Devils are close to completing a deal for the Real Madrid midfielder, filling a hole in their midfield that has been present for years. [BBC Sport]

However, in a discussion on Soccer Saturday on 20 August, Dawson revealed why he thinks the Manchester club should have made a move for the West Ham captain instead.

Dawson said: “Surely Declan Rice has got to be a name in there.

“I know he is English and we have seen him in Euros but I am a massive fan of him.

“Casemiro is a good signing but I am looking at Declan Rice and thinking go and pay that, you’re Manchester United!”

Rice or Casemiro?

The two holding midfielders are two of the best in the world in their positions and would both add undeniable quality to the middle of the park at Old Trafford.

Casemiro is much more of a destroyer than Rice, with the Englishman much more accustomed to progressing the ball with his dribbling ability and passing range.

Last season, Rice had completed more passes than the Brazilian enforcer, had a higher pass accuracy percentage, and had more progressive passes than the 30-year-old. [FBRef]

In addition to this, the 23-year-old also had 2.8 times as many touches as Casemiro as well as 397 more progressive carries. [FBRef]

However, Casemiro had more tackles, interceptions, and clearances than the England international and it is the Brazilian enforcer that the Red Devils have decided to recruit. [FBRef]

Despite having different styles of controlling a midfield and having a seven-year age difference, they are similar players in terms of influence and quality and West Ham fans can breathe easy knowing they have been able to keep hold of their captain again this summer.

In other West Ham news, the club are looking to conclude a deal for Emerson Palmieri.