Manchester United had to dig deep as they held on to secure all three points against Crystal Palace despite going down to 10 men in the second-half.
Casemiro was shown a straight red for violent conduct and the Brazilian is likely to miss three games unless United appeal against the decision and it gets overturned.
Erik ten Hag was forced into making changes to hold on to the lead and he brought on deadline day arrival Marcel Sabitzer in the 80th minute.
Sabitzer impresses during difficult cameo
It was the most difficult of circumstances to make one’s debut after not playing regularly for the last three months. But the Bayern Munich man showed his class.
He got a hold of the ball only three times but his impact was there for all to see. One clean tackle which set Marcus Rashford off for a counter was adjudged to be a foul.
The Austrian worked his socks off during his cameo as he pressed diligently and kept trying to close off passing lanes.
Marcel Sabitzer 9 Minute Manchester United Debutpic.twitter.com/uGLY6XFSjS
— esther 🇩🇪 (@KimmichEra) February 5, 2023
And the Dutch manager was full of praise for the effort put in by the 28-year-old as his side claimed a nervy 2-1 win at Old Trafford.
“Yeah he understands football. You see straight from the start. We have already seen that in the training as well. But, yeah, he did quite well.
“He’s really composed on the ball and he knows how to defend. We need such a player who understands the game and will bring also the right spirit in,” Ten Hag told MUTV.
ETH & Shaw praise Sabitzer impact
Luke Shaw was clearly impressed with what he saw for the Austria international and felt his energetic cameo had a huge part in United’s victory.
“He was amazing and he’s not been here long. He’s only been here a couple of days now and he showed his quality in training.
“I think to come on with 10 men and show that impressive performance in not so long [on the pitch] is good and shows signs to come of what he’s about.”
With the Brazil international set to miss three games and no signs of Scott McTominay‘s return, United supporters are set to see a lot more of the Bayern Munich man in the days to come.
Back-to-back games against arch-rivals Leeds United will be the real acid test for Sabitzer and could propel him into a fan-favourite if he succeeds.
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