Patrick McNair and Luke Shaw, two 19-year old defenders in the early stages of their Manchester United careers, were the team’s stand out players against Crystal Palace.
The fact they were the side’s primary man of the match candidates speaks volumes for the lack of creativity at the other end of the field but it is refreshing to see certain defenders begin to look more solid in a red shirt.
Only a month ago Shaw had come under criticism for his early performances but the defender looked much more solid in recent games against Chelsea and Manchester City, whilst McNair continued the good form he showed in his other starts against Everton and West Ham United.
United supporters were quick to shower both with compliments after a stellar defensive performance saw the side record a rare clean sheet, their first since the 4-0 win against QPR almost two months ago.
Luke Shaw today had 100% of his tackles won,2 aerial duels won,7 clearances And a 84% pass accuracy
— Love is(Daley) Blind (@ImMatasexual) November 8, 2014
How lucky we are to sign Luke Shaw? What a player.
— Azeem (@AzeemZMir) November 8, 2014
Shaw MOTM for me. Outstanding today. Did well to dig it out at the end. McNair also brilliant. Move on to Arsenal away now.
— M (@United99_) November 8, 2014
Paddy McNair had another good game as well. Loves bringing the ball out from the back that lad.
— Marmite (@Devil_Red_1878) November 8, 2014
McNair is calm and assured. Looks like he belongs. Not over awed at all.
— Howellsey (@RalphieMilne) November 8, 2014
Shaw and McNair are the only starters who've impressed today
— James Stretford (@Jamesstretford) November 8, 2014
The club now have a two week break thanks to the latest round of international matches before they face a tough test at the Emirates Stadium against Arsenal on November 22.
Louis van Gaal will hope to have a full strength defence to choose from bar the long-term absentee in Rojo but McNair continues to defy his age and experience and has every chance of facing the Gunners in a fortnight.