Manchester United succumbed to their first loss of the Premier League campaign, losing 1-2 to Crystal Palace at Old Trafford in Matchday 3.
United started the game on the front-foot, dominating possession and rarely putting a wrong move forward. However, they couldn’t conjure that lethal touch in the final third and a defensive hiccup allowed Jordan Ayew to put Palace ahead in the 31st minute. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side has a big task ahead of them.
They did bomb forward relentlessly in the second half, with Scott McTominay earning a penalty which Marcus Rashford missed in the 70th minute. Daniel James equalized the game in the 89th minute, but a horrible David De Gea error allowed Patrick Van Aanholt to get the winner. This loss piles the pressure on the underperforming side and OGS, who need to do much better to survive.
Manchester United Player Ratings
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (5.0) –
Solskjaer went with the same team which draw on Monday night and perhaps missed a trick by not starting Mason Greenwood for the inconsistent Jesse Lingard. Needs to tune up his side’s ability of putting shots on goal as well as creating clear-cut chances. Ole desperately needs to improve his substitutions and make his side defend counter-attacks better. Has a lot cut out for him after this embarrassment.
David de Gea (4.5) –
Had very little to do early on, but powerless to stop Ayew’s goal in a 1v1 situation. Made a solid save few minutes later off Zaha from a close-range to keep the deficit small. However, he should’ve saved Van Aanholt’s goal as it went through him. Cannot continue captaining his side with these horrible mistakes.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (5.5) –
Against his former side, AWB had more attacking work to do than be combative defensively early on. Made some impressive attacking stances, but unable to create anything. Makes an iconic spider-like tackle in the 21st minute. Not decisive enough going forward. Booked early in the second half for a poor challenge. Put in a looping cross for Young in the 52nd minute. Grew exhausted towards the end and it was his challenge on Zaha which allowed Van Aanholt to score the winner .
Harry Maguire (5.5) –
The big centre-back tried a few ambitious long-balls to Shaw early on, off which only one worked out. He’s absolutely unbeatable in the air, as proved in three thunderous aerial duels so far. However, he did play Ayew onside for the opener in a very clumsy manner. Should’ve done better there! Had a back-header get collected by Victor Guaita after the penalty miss.
Played the last few minutes as a make-shift centre-forward, but failed to snatch a point for United. Gets his first reality check at his new club.
Victor Lindelof (4.5)-
He didn’t have to much than distributing the ball early on, but stumbled when pressure arrived. He got outjumped by Jeffrey Schlupp in the 31st minute and saw Jordan Ayew score off it. He was again wrong-footed minutes later when Schlupp went past him easily. Not looking so cool anymore. Looked very shaky defending against mobile attacks, even though he distributed the ball well.
Luke Shaw () –
The young left-back seems to be full of energy. Had a shot blaze over in the 9th minute. Shaw blazed past multiple defenders in the 16th minute to see a delicious pass to create James’ goal-scoring chance. However, he went down around the half-hour mark with an apparent cramp and had to be substituted. This isn’t good!
Paul Pogba (5.5) –
PP seems undaunted by the mid-week debacle and is ruling the midfield as usual. Flung in a stunning long-ball to Martial in the 11th minute to earn a free-kick. The wind swung another ambitious long-ball out in the 20th minute. Four minutes later he wiggled inside the penalty area, almost setting up his fellow Frenchman. Also had a late free-kick go just wide.
United too dependent on him to create chances and kick-start attacks. He’s tried and tried, but failed to get that lethal pass. Was dispossessed leading to the second Palace goal. A frustrating afternoon for the misfiring Frenchman.
Scott McTominay (6.0) –
Looks tidy in the heart of United’s midfield. Flinging out the ball forward. Even had a header go over in the 5th minute. Made a solid challenge on Zaha in the 45th minute, but he’s getting overrun at times. Not at all creative to help his side go forward. However, desperate times called for him to march forward in the 68th minute, with his clever move earning his side a penalty. Tried a desperate left-foot shot in the 77th which went wide.
Jesse Lingard (5.0) –
After a string of disappointing performances, he looks livelier than usual. Lingard’s pressing with intent and moving well on the ball. Lucky to not get booked after a nasty early challenge on Luka Milivojevic. Still not good enough in the final third.
Finally puts in a decent cross in the 50th minute. Then makes another mistake as he scuffs Pogba’s pass from a free area inside the box. Another frustrating performance.
Marcus Rashford (4.5) –
Seems to have improved free-kick technique. His free-kick delivery in the 8th minute was inviting. Went through on goal in the 10th minute, but slipped inside the box to allow Martin Kelly a tackle in. Saw his 15th minute free-kick sail just wide of the goal. Had another closer attempt breeze wide in the 26th. Frustrated early on in the second half with a nothing shot and horrible through-ball in a promising situation.
Lady Luck just wasn’t on his side as his penalty struck the post. VAR wasn’t his friend when he went down in the 82nd. Things just didn’t go his way and he just wasn’t good enough either throughout the game.
Daniel James (7.0) –
James is electric on the right with his tricky movement. Had a shot on target deflected out for a corner in the 17th minute. James also had another swipe at goal when his shot from a wide angle struck a Palace player out for a corner. Again booked for an apparent dive(which was a foul). Looks more menacing down the left.
And from here comes his impact! Curled in the ball perfectly into the top-hand corner to get United a life-line. He’s loving life at Old Trafford and will only get better. That’s the only positive from today!
Anthony Martial (6.0)–
The French sizzler really seems to be enjoying his time as a centre-forward, moving forward with more sauce. Trumpled over by Gary Cahill late into the half in what was a clear-cut goal-scoring chance. Martial went into a promising goal-scoring position again in the 55th minute, but being tugged down by Kelly only letting him shoot over.
Found James cleverly for the goal. However, was hobbling horribly late on which raises another injury concern.
Ashley Young (5.5)-
Put in a dangerous cross in the 47th minute to Daniel James. Saw an ambitious volley go above minutes later. Defensively still very shaky and his crosses were bad as usual.
Mason Greenwood (5.5)-
The youngster was isolated in an unknown position and couldn’t really create anything.
Juan Mata (N/A) –
Came on very late but failed to force the issue.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Nobody really deserves is in this drab performance, but Daniel James was probably the only bright sign for United.