A clinical Manchester United progressed through to the fourth round of the Carabao Cup after beating Crystal Palace 3-0 at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
Manager Erik ten Hag decided to ring in the changes for the first time in over a year while giving key players the night off as the reserve players put on quite the show.
This was United’s most dominant display of the season and their second clean sheet on the trot, something that will please the manager a lot.
Varane’s return has seen United’s defence improve manifold
It has been a poor start to the season for United, especially defensively and things have not been helped by the injuries to so many of their defenders.
One player whose absence was more keenly felt than others was Raphael Varane, with United conceding 10 goals in the three games that he missed.
He provides a composed touch in defence while being commanding and is very hard to beat in duels, something the Eagles found to their detriment.
His comeback from injury has coincided with two clean sheets and on the start of the defence of the League Cup, the Frenchman was sublime.
He got 61 minutes under his belt, during which he had 81 touches of the ball, and made 74 passes resulting in a pass completion rate of 95 percent.
Varane was dominant vs Palace
The World Cup winner sprayed the ball from side to side, utilising the ball in an efficient manner and completing three long balls along the way.
He won 100 percent of his aerial duels while making one interception and one clearance, hardly allowing the Palace players to threaten.
It was only when he went off that the team from Selhurst Park managed their only two shots on target in the game.
Ten Hag will be hoping the former Real Madrid man can stay fit for longer this time around as he will be sorely needed if United are to continue their winning run and climb up the Premier League table.