Manchester United 1-0 Crystal Palace LIVE: Bruno Fernandes hops, skips and scores from the penalty spot to put Erik ten Hag’s side ahead early on, with the help of a VAR check
Follow Sportsmail’s live blog for the Premier League clash between Manchester United and Crystal Palace.
27min: United attack again and Rashford, full of confidence as he has been in recent weeks, takes aim first time. Guaita needs to make the save, pushing the ball away at the near post.
From the corner, Antony tries to curl home a shot and the Palace keeper makes a comfortable save this time.
Rashford and Antony have swapped flanks to keep Palace guessing.
26min: Olise tries to get Palace on the move but his attempted through ball goes all the way through to David de Gea.
United remain very comfortable.
20min: Luke Shaw’s driving run down the left forces another corner for the home side. Inswinger and Richards heads it away. Raphael Varane returns it to Fred, Fernandes clips a ball in and Rashford goes to ground under pressure from Richards, with the supporters wanting another penalty. Not happening.
19min: Casemiro on the end of a heavy tackle by Tyrick Mitchell and goes to ground in a bit of discomfort. Just a free-kick and nothing more.
18min: Palace with a rare spell on the ball with Michael Olise close to the corner flag following a succession of throw-ins.
Tyrick Mitchell manages to get a cross in but United clear their lines.
They counter and Rashford is slipped through by Fernandes only to be called back by the usual late offside flag.
15min: Incidentally, Man United playing their first Saturday 3pm kick-off of the season.
They’re fizzing the ball around in Palace’s half and are brimming with confidence.
13mins: Man United pretty much paying rent in the Palace half during these opening stages, with Patrick Vieira sufficiently worried to stand on the touchline trying to raise the energy levels.
United win a corner and from it Wout Weghorst gets up for the header, without too much power, and Vicente Guaita is called into action to keep it 1-0.
9mins: United well and truly in the mood this afternoon. Aaron Wan-Bissaka crosses against his old club and there’s another, more optimistic, appeal for handball. Not this time.
It’s as easy as you like by Bruno Fernandes, who rolls home the penalty after the hop, step and jump run up and it’s the perfect start for Manchester United. That’s his 99th career league goal…
Fernandes simply waited for the Palace keeper Guaita to commit and then slotted the penalty into the bottom left corner.
The referee Andre Marriner advised to trot over to the pitchside monitor to check replays and he decides United will have an early penalty for handball against Will Hughes.
4min: United attack for the first time, first with Antony on the right and then Rashford on the left. There are claims for a handball against Will Hughes as Rashford crossed. VAR checking.
2mins: Palace awarded an early free-kick that Michael Olise will deliver. United know all about his ability with the dead ball from the other week. 10 yards in from the touchline, Olise delivers and Casemiro puts it behind for a corner.
The corner is a waste, failing to beat the first man and Bruno Fernandes nods it clear.
The minute of silence impeccably observed at Old Trafford and as 3pm ticks by, the game is underway.
United in their traditional colours of red, white and black. Palace in all-white this afternoon.
Andre Marriner blows his whistle, with United defending the Stretford End in the first half.
Monday marks the 65th anniversary of the Munich Air Disaster and ahead of kick-off Erik ten Hag and Patrick Vieira have laid wreaths on the edge of the centre circle as part of commemorations.
A huge banner depicting the Busby Babes is on the Stretford End.
The families of some of the eight United players who lost their lives that fateful day in 1958 in attendance today.
The players out early and we will have a minute of silence to remember the victims before the game.
The players just completing their warm-up routines at Old Trafford with kick-off now just a few minutes away.
Here’s a reminder of the two team line-ups:
Manchester United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Shaw; Casemiro, Fred; Antony, Fernandes, Rashford; Weghorst
Crystal Palace: Guaita; Clyne, Richards, Guehi, Mitchell; Doucoure, Hughes; Ayew, Olise, Schlupp; Edouard
Raphael Varane has revealed that he decided to retire from France duty because he was struggling to cope with football’s ‘overloaded schedule’.
Varane called time on his international career on Thursday, despite seemingly being at his peak and still two months shy of his 30th birthday.
But the Manchester United defender has opened up on how having to consistently play at the highest level has taken its toll on him and led to him taking the difficult decision to stop playing for France.
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Crystal Palace boss Patrick Vieira removed Shaun Derry as a first team coach in a row for overstepping in his role after he was caught repeatedly berating players.
The former Arsenal midfielder confirmed earlier this week Derry was set to step down from his role as Eagles first-team coach but refused to go into details.
However, Sportsmail can reveal that the relationship between Vieira and Derry broke down as far back as October, when Palace suffered a 3-0 defeat to strugglers Everton.
The Frenchman entered the dressing room to find his first-team coach Derry berating the players after their dismal performance at Goodison Park.
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Incidentally, if you still don’t know anything about Marcel Sabitzer, here’s one I prepared earlier.
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The on-loan Austrian midfielder is named among the subs today with Fred partnering Casemiro.
👣 First steps. #MUFC || #MUNCRY pic.twitter.com/n9HT41Kuyy
Manchester United have won 12 consecutive home games in all competitions, their best streak since a run of 20 from December 2010 to September 2011 under Sir Alex Ferguson.
They have conceded just one goal in their last five home league matches.
The Red Devils have kept eight Premier League clean sheets in this campaign, as many as they managed in the whole of last season.
They have dropped five points from a winning position in their last two league matches, having not let a lead slip in their opening 18 league fixtures this season.
Marcus Rashford has scored 10 goals in 12 appearances in all competitions since the World Cup, more than any other current Premier League player.
Bruno Fernandes has scored or provided an assist in all four of Manchester United’s Premier League matches in 2023 (two goals and two assists).
Erik ten Hag, speaking to MUTV ahead of the game, said Anthony Martial is absent from the squad today after suffering an injury setback,
‘He had a setback from the game when he returned. He dropped a little back. We have to wait, we have to be patient,’ Ten Hag said.
The French striker showed such promise in pre-season but this would be a fifth separate injury issue this season if a fresh problem.
Full-time at Goodison and what a phenomenal start for Sean Dyche as the Toffees topples the league leaders.
James Tarkowski’s header has put a real dent in Arsenal’s title ambitions. Everton out of the bottom three.
Arsenal legend Patrick Vieira persuaded Albert Sambi Lokonga to leave the Gunners and join his Crystal Palace team on loan with a phone call, the midfielder revealed.
The Eagles confirmed the deadline day capture of Lokonga on Tuesday, in a bid to strengthen their squad in the middle of the pitch until the end of the current campaign.
Palace boss Vieira made over 270 appearances for Arsenal in a spell from 1996 to 2005, winning three Premier League titles in that time.
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Crystal Palace have taken just two points from the last 12 available and are yet to win in any competition in 2023.
They have failed to score in five of their past seven Premier League games.
Palace’s next defeat will be their 400th in the top flight.
This season, Palace are winless in all 11 league matches against teams in the top half of the table (D5, L6).
They have lost 21 of their last 29 Premier League fixtures without Wilfried Zaha (W4, D4).
IAN LADYMAN: Some 250 days since he arrived at Manchester United, Erik ten Hag faces one of his biggest dilemmas. The only consolation is he does not have to handle it alone.
The issue of Mason Greenwood and whether he should ever be invited to play for United again hung heavy over Ten Hag’s weekly press conference yesterday. The United manager quite sensibly did not get involved with an issue that remains legally sensitive. Three times he was asked and three times he said no. It was a pretty emphatic hat-trick.
Ten Hag will be at the heart of the Old Trafford discussions about Greenwood and what to do with him, however. While the club must balance the benefits of having a very good player — and potential asset for sale — back on the field against the publicity and pushback from some sponsors and supporters that would bring.
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We could have a shock result in the Premier League this lunchtime, with relegation-threatened Everton leading leaders Arsenal 1-0 entering the final few minutes at Goodison Park.
James Tarkowski headed in the game’s only goal so far on the hour.
Can Sean Dyche’s side cling on? You can follow the last few minutes by clicking below.
It will be a poignant afternoon at Old Trafford as we approach the 65th anniversary of the 1958 Munich Air Crash in which 23 died, including eight members of Matt Busby’s team.
Dozens of supporters gathered at the Munich memorial outside Old Trafford to pay their respects ahead of the match today.
Patrick Vieira has made three changes from the draw with Newcastle.
Nathaniel Clyne replaces Joel Ward in defence, Will Hughes returns to the midfield, while Michael Olise comes into the attack.
The two new signings, Lokonga and Ahamada, both start on the bench.
Guaita (GK), Clyne, Guéhi, Richards, Ward, Doucouré, Hughes, Schlupp, Olise, Edouard, Ayew.
Subs: Johnstone (GK), Whitworth (GK), Tomkins, Milivojevic, Riedewald, Ahamada, Lokonga, Eze, Mateta.
The XI to take on United 💪@shophumm 📲#CPFC | #MUNCRY
So the usual strong line-up from Ten Hag… Fred partners Casemiro in midfield with Sabitzer taking his place on the bench.
Wout Weghorst continues at centre forward ahead of Anthony Martial, who isn’t in the squad.
Jadon Sancho again starts on the bench.
De Gea (GK), Wan-Bissaka, Martinez, Varane, Shaw, Casemiro, Fred, Fernandes, Rashford, Weghorst, Antony.
Subs: Heaton (GK), Lindelof, Maguire, Malacia, Sabitzer, Dalot, Sancho, Garnacho, Mainoo.
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The Reds to take on the Eagles 🥁#MUFC || #MUNCRY
United are in excellent from but Palace are one of the teams they do struggle with. Indeed, United have recorded just one win in their last five meetings, drawing two and losing two.
That win was the first game of Ralf Rangnick’s interim tenure in December 2021 when we saw United deploy a ferocious pressing game that, well, we never saw again.
Palace have won on two of their last three league visits to Old Trafford including a 3-1 win on the opening day of the 2020-21 season and United have been troubled by their pace on the counter-attack in the past.
Ten Hag’s United look far stronger, however, but even they were stung for two points late on when the teams met last month.
We already know that Wilfried Zaha won’t face his former club for Crystal Palace today. He will be sidelined for a while with a hamstring injury.
James McArthur and Nathan Ferguson are back in training but not yet match fit.
January signings Naouirou Ahamada and Albert Sambi Lokonga are both in the squad.
We’ll get the confirmed team line-ups in 10 minutes or so and all eyes on the Man United teamsheet will be on whether Erik ten Hag brings new boy Marcel Sabitzer straight in for his debut.
Ten Hag confirmed in his press conference yesterday that the Austrian will have a role to play and there were no worries over his fitness levels, as United look to compensate for Christian Eriksen’s injury absence.
Right-back Diogo Dalot is also now back in training for United, while Jadon Sancho is also back in the fold and came off the bench against Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup in midweek.
The weekend’s Premier League football well underway. Big January spenders Chelsea were held to a goalless draw by west London neighbours Fulham last night.
As it stands, leaders Arsenal are being held by struggling Everton in the lunchtime game.
Chelsea 0-0 Fulham
Everton 0-0 Arsenal (Latest)
Aston Villa vs Leicester City (3pm)
Brentford vs Southampton (3pm)
Brighton and Hove Albion vs AFC Bournemouth (3pm)
Manchester United vs Crystal Palace (3pm)
Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Liverpool (3pm)
Newcastle United vs West Ham United (5.30pm)
Nottingham Forest vs Leeds United (2pm)
Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester City (4.30pm)
Patrick Vieira’s side sit 12th at the moment and are fairly comfortable in mid-table with enough of a cushion between themselves and those battling relegation.
However, they’re not in the best form, with just one win in their last nine games in all competitions, and they could do with some points to start looking upwards again.
Palace have drawn their last two games, one of which came against Man United just 17 days ago when Michael Olise’s last-gasp free-kick snatched a point.
Prior to that, they’d lost three in a row, including a disappointing FA Cup exit to Southampton.
So it’s far from ideal form to come to Old Trafford in.
It’s fair to say that the defeat to Arsenal had knocked United out of the Premier League title race – if they were ever truly in it.
But finishing in the top four and qualifying for the Champions League again would represent a highly satisfactory start for Erik ten Hag at Old Trafford.
They are in a strong position to do so as they jostle for position with Newcastle. They have a three point cushion to Tottenham in fifth place and have a game in hand too.
Of course, that gap will extend to six points if they win today and Spurs have a tricky assignment against Manchester City tomorrow.
With Chelsea and Liverpool some way back and stuttering, United have a strong chance of making the top four.
There’s rarely a dull moment in the saga of Manchester United but this has been an extraordinary week even by their standards.
The sudden decision by prosecutors to drop all charges against Mason Greenwood, the United forward who has been suspended for over a year, has led to an unexpected dilemma.
The club are conducting an internal investigation to decide whether Greenwood is reintegrated into Erik ten Hag’s squad or whether his contract will be ripped up.
Amid the fall-out to all that, United will aim to cement their standing in the Premier League top four as they host Crystal Palace this afternoon in a lesser spotted Saturday 3pm kick-off for Ten Hag’s side.
They’re going well at Old Trafford at the moment, winning their last 12 home games in all competitions, but Palace have proved something of a bogey side in recent seasons.
We could see a debut for Austrian midfielder Marcel Sabitzer, and emergency loan from Bayern Munich on deadline day with Christian Eriksen set to be sidelined until late April.
So what will unfold on the Old Trafford pitch this afternoon? Stay tuned to find out.
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