Nemanja Matic’s Twelfth-minute effort proved to be Manchester United’s solely shot on course as a limp 0-0 draw at Crystal Palace left them 14 factors off leaders Manchester City.
United dropped factors for the seventh time of their final 10 Premier League video games and by no means put up any actual combat to earn three factors in south London, with Palace, who had mustered solely six pictures of their earlier two video games, twice going near a shock win.
After Matic’s early piledriver was turned behind by a full-stretch Vicente Guaita save, United stuttered all through and have been made to fret when Andros Townsend’s volley flew simply previous Dean Henderson’s far put up after half-time.
Late on, after Luke Shaw and Mason Greenwood had each missed alternatives, Patrick Van Aanholt – scorer of Palace’s injury-time winner at Old Trafford in 2019 – was denied one other profitable contribution by Henderson’s legs.
But even gaining that time for United leaves their title problem nearly as good as over with a visit to leaders City, reside on Sky Sports, to comply with this weekend.
Poor United labour to dour draw
Crystal Palace had by no means recorded a league double over Manchester United, so after a shock end result of their opening-weekend win at Old Trafford, there was an opportunity to make historical past at Selhurst Park.
The hosts started on the entrance foot, however failed to show that into an early shot – not that an absence of probabilities had stopped them selecting up 4 factors from their final two video games. And as soon as United started to say their high quality in possession, they stood agency.
Matic’s deflected drive pressured Guaita right into a finger-tip cease and Rashford fired a low effort broad from the sting of the realm, however past these alternatives the hosts have been largely untroubled, as United did not click on into gear within the last third.
The first half proved so uneventful Andre Marriner opted towards including any damage time, and a managerial team-talk did not spark any type of life into the guests, even realizing what was at stake in what stays of the title race.
Instead, Townsend’s well-struck volley bounced previous Henderson’s put up after United did not clear a free-kick, and Andre Ayew examined the goalkeeper from a good angle from Christian Benteke’s tee-up.
Substitute Dan James would have proved an unlikely matchwinner had his 5ft 7ins body directed Shaw’s cross goalwards, however his glancing header was cleared behind by Gary Cahill as United provided a uncommon second of concern.
Two extra adopted within the dying minutes, with Greenwood and Shaw each firing broad from good positions, earlier than Luka Milivojevic’s through-ball launched Van Aanholt, who was denied by Henderson’s sensible cease when clear by way of.
Defeat would have been harsh on United in a balanced recreation however not undeserved, given their lack of depth, however even some extent does little for his or her hopes on the prime – and once more fails to place distance between themselves and third-placed Leicester.
Both groups are again on tv this weekend with a pair of tasty cross-city derbies as a part of Super Sunday reside on Sky Sports Premier League.
First off, Manchester United go to Manchester City from 4pm; Kick-off at 4.30pm. Following that recreation, Crystal Palace’s journey to Tottenham will comply with from 7pm; Kick-off at 7.15pm.