By Andy Hyslop
- United register a third consecutive 0-0 draw
- Result leaves United fourth in the table, four points off the top
Manchester United fans had to endure a third consecutive o-o draw as the reds failed to threaten the Crystal Palace goal in this game. The draw is United’s fourth in a row in three different competitions.
Depending on how you want to look at that sequence of results. You could be positive and say United have lost in five games since the 3-0 mauling at the hands of Arsenal. And conceded only one goal in those five games.
Or you could prefer to say United haven’t won in four games and failed to score in three of those games. These sequence of results has seen United drop down from second to fourth in the league and knocked out of the Capital One Cup against Championship opposition.
United made two changes to their team from the one that started their last Premier League against City. In defence Darmian came in for Valencia, who picked up an injury in that draw. Whilst Blind replaced Jones, who is said to be in the ‘red zone’ and at risk of injury.
Jones hasn’t even made it onto the bench for the games and Middlesbrough and today’s visit to Selhurst Park. Van Gaal named 17 year-old centre-back Axel Tuanzebe on the bench today, after his impressive performances for the under-18s last season. Winning the academy play of the year.
Crystal Palace started the game the better, having the majority of the possession and closing United down when they had the ball. Bolasie forced De Gea into a fine save, as he parried his shot onto the crossbar.
As the first-half went on United controlled possession but failed to trouble Hennessey in the Palace goal. The closest United came was when Rooney attempted to run onto a martial through ball but Hennessey charged off his line to thwart the United skipper.
Palace dominated play in the second-half with both Zaha and Bolasie caused United problems down both flanks. Despite all their possession in the second-half, De Gea’s goal was rarely threatened. Darmian picked up a yellow card for a challenge on Zaha that will see the Italian right-back will miss United’s next league game against West Brom.
United stay in fourth place in the Premier League table but are now four points behind both City and Arsenal, who both picked up three points today thanks to wins over Norwich and Swansea respectively.
United will be looking to earn two back-to-back wins at home against CSKA Moscow and West Brom before their players head off to represent their countries.
Manchester United: De Gea, Darmian (Young 66), Smalling, Blind, Rojo, Schneiderlin, Schweinsteiger (Fellaini 68), Mata (Lingard 79), Herrera, Martial, Rooney Substitutes Not Used: Romero, Tuanzebe, Carrick, Pereira