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Match report: Crystal Palace 1-1 Manchester United

by Zoe Hodges

Manchester United have drawn against Crystal Palace in the Premier League.

In the first five minutes, Manchester United dominated possession but you could see the gaps Palace could exploit going forwards.

Palace were putting crosses into the danger zone but there was no one to get on the end of it, to the relief of the loud travelling away fans.

At the other end, they had a disaster defensively as Guaita dropped a simple Fernandes cross before a miscommunication between the defenders as to who would clear the ball, almost gave United an opportunity to steal the ball back.

After a quarter of an hour had passed, the best chance came for Luke Shaw, as the ball floated in to him, he took it on the half-volley but it was just wide.

Weghorst had his first sniff at goal with a looping header that he couldn’t keep on target.

It was end to end, there were some good interceptions from both teams, Wan-Bissaka was having a great game, meaning the keepers were kept quiet.

That was until the 40th minute when De Gea pulled off a world class save. Edouard fired a shot from the edge of the box and it was dipping just under the bar. A finger tip save from the Spaniard pushed it onto the crossbar. It set the game alight.

At the other end, Manchester United went charging forward. A nice bit of link up play down the left between Rashford and Eriksen allowed the Danish international to pull it back to Fernandes who was just inside the box in acres of space. He had time to control it and smash it past the keeper.

United came out searching for a quick second after half-time but Palace were alert to the danger and the Reds couldn’t find a way through.

Following a corner, Fernandes squared it to Antony who was waiting just outside the area, central to the goal but he couldn’t keep his shot down as he looked for the top corner.

A slight interuption followed as a fan ran onto the pitch to take a selfie with Casemiro. Much to the dismay of everyone, the stewards were nowhere in sight as he ran across the pitch, had a brief chat with the United star and take the picture before the stewards began to make their way to him.

Rashford, who has scored in every game since the World Cup, was searching for a goal but when he had a chance it was too high.

A free-kick for Palace with just over fifteen minutes left to play led to a corner for the home side.

It was sent in towards the centre of the area, Guehi’s header was on target and once again De Gea kept his side’s lead as he dived to the left stretching up his right hand to deny Palace an equaliser.

United were clinging on for dear life as Palace kept coming with wave after wave of attack. Casemiro felt he had to lunge in and bring down Zaha, who had had a fairly decent game, he received a booking for his troubles which will rule him out of United’s clash against Arsenal.

All United’s hard work was undone after Palace won a free-kick, it was a brilliant strike from Olise who found the top corner in the 91st minute.

United picked up the pace and tried to restore their lead as Garnacho smashed one goalwards but it was plucked out of the air by the keeper.

Had United managed to hold on they would have been six points behind Arsenal and would have moved into second, ahead of City but having drawn they still sit third behind their neighbours.

With Arsenal to come next weekend, any hope fans had of being title contenders after their victory over City had been dashed slightly after a draw which felt like a loss.

Team: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Shaw, Casemiro, Eriksen, Antony (Garnacho 70), Fernandes, Rashford, Weghorst (McTominay 70)

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