Casemiro's double and Fred strike help Man United into FA Cup fifth round
A sublime Casemiro double formed part of a large Brazilian influence that helped steer Manchester United into the fifth round of the FA Cup as they beat Reading 3-1 at Old Trafford.
Erik ten Hag's side were dominant throughout as their recent spell of good form continued, although they were unable to find a way past a committed Royals defence - the visitors managed by former United midfielder Paul Ince - in the first half.
As it turned out, the game needed a sprinkle of Brazilian magic as Casemiro, Antony and Fred helped guide Man Utd through. They also recorded an 11th successive home win in all competitions.
Midfielder Casemiro scored twice shortly after the break. Antony picked out his team-mate with a world-class pass for the opener (54) before a Fred assist saw the former Real Madrid man lash home the second three minutes later.
Fred (66) then added his own name to the scoresheet with a delightful flicked finish at the near post. It came a minute after former Liverpool striker Andy Carroll (65) was sent off for a second bookable offence, having made a late, clumsy challenge on Casemiro.
Reading pulled back a goal late on through Amadou Salif Mbengue's (72) free header, but the only real blow for the hosts was an ankle injury for midfielder Christian Eriksen.
Ten Hag, who faces a hectic fixture schedule next month with eight matches in February, says it is "difficult" to give a diagnosis but the midfielder will be assessed over the next 24 hours.
Manchester United's next game is their Carabao Cup semi-final, second leg at home to Nottingham Forest on Wednesday before hosting Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday.