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Premier League 2017/18 - Manchester United 4-0 Crystal Palace: Player Ratings

Shuvam Sinha
ANALYST
Feature
4.45K   //    30 Sep 2017, 23:05 IST

Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
If a picture can describe a match, this is it

Manchester United demolished Crystal Palace at Old Trafford to temporarily leapfrog rivals Manchester City to the top of the Premier League table. Juan Mata gave the hosts an early lead, slotting home after some brilliant work by Marcus Rashford on the wing. Marouane Fellaini's brace - one in either half - helped United pull away from Palace before Romelu Lukaku scored late on to seal the points for Jose Mourinho's side.

The result means that Crystal Palace have failed to score or register a point from their opening 7 games of the season - both unwanted Premier League records.

Here are the Player Ratings from a one-sided affair at Old Trafford:

Manchester United

David de Gea - 7

De Gea had just one save to make the entire game, pushing away Bakary Sako's powerful strike in the first half. Had little else to do for the remainder of the game as Palace struggled to hit the target.

Antonio Valencia - 7.5

Valencia was brilliant going forward, making overlapping runs behind van Aanholt with the help of Mata on the flanks.Was reliable as ever at the back.

Phil Jones - 7.5

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Jones was solid in defense, keeping his concentration intact during rare spells of Palace attacks. His communication with Smalling - the first time the pair have started this season - was next to flawless as they maintained their clean sheet.

Chris Smalling - 7.5

In his first Premier League start, Smalling was impressive at the back, bailing United out on the rare occasions Palace sniffed an opportunity. He blocked Yohan Cabaye's goal-bound shot in the first half before seeing out the corner that followed. His clearances and interceptions were crucial during periods when Palace seemed to have a stronger grip on the game.

Ashley Young - 7

Young delivered a performance reminiscent of his youthful days as a left-winger at Aston Villa, steaming forward and crossing the ball with whip and accuracy. His delivery for Fellaini's first goal was sublime. Defensively, he looked a touch susceptible but he did ensure that as much as possible, Townsend was stifled for space in the attacking third for a majority of the game.

Nemanja Matic - 7.5

Matic did what Matic does best, bringing a calming sense to proceedings in the middle and helping United surge forward each time they won the ball from Palace.


Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
The players mob Fellaini as the big man backs his second of the game

Marouane Fellaini - 9

Fellaini was the pick of the United bunch at Old Trafford, scoring a brace and running proceedings in midfield. He dealt with an aerially strong Palace side with ease and never allowed any of them to control the game in the middle of the pitch.

Juan Mata - 7.5

Mata scored his first Premier League goal since February, tucking away Rashford's cross with his first touch to give United the advantage. His touches to receive long passes were sublime, so were his movements into the penalty area to test the likes of Jeffrey Schlupp and Patrick van Aanholt.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan - 7

Mkhitaryan's good start to the season in a number 10 role continues, as he maneuvered in and around the vicinity of the penalty area with pace and intensity, putting the Eagles' holding midfielders on their toes throughout the time he was on the pitch. He missed a good chance in the first half, smashing a volley over the crossbar.

Marcus Rashford - 7.5

Rashford got the game off to an electric start, rounding Joel Ward to make room near the byline and deliver a low cross for Juan Mata to slot home and give United an early lead. He was thoroughly dominant in that area of the pitch, giving Ward a torrid afternoon with his fleet-footedness.

Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
Lukaku plays; Lukaku scores

Romelu Lukaku - 7

The Belgian was unable to muster many efforts on target this time around, but eventually found the back of the net late in the game from Martial's pass. He missed an absolute sitter moments before scoring following an advantage after Lingard was fouled on the edge of the box when he did everything right but for the final bit of hitting the back of the net. Still, it's 7 in 7 now for the big man.

Substitutions:

Jesse Lingard - 6.5

Lingard used his pace to good effect against a tiring Eagles' defence, finding room to get a couple of shots at goal.

Anthony Martial - 7.5

Martial's role of a super-sub shows no sign of going away, as he absolutely bamboozled Ward and Townsend on the wing with his dribbling and pace on the ball. He provided the assist for Lukaku's late goal to make it another 4-goal fest for Jose Mourinho's side.

Ander Herrera - 6.5

Herrera replaced Mata to slow the game down. He saw the game out with some neat passes in midfield.


Crystal Palace


Wayne Hennessey - 5.5

Hennessey could not be faulted for any of the goals Palace conceded. He made a couple of smart saves to deny Rashford and Martial from similar positions in either half.

Joel Ward - 4

Ward would want to forget this game in a hurry - he was absolutely taken to the cleaners by Rashford's excellence on the ball. It was a total mismatch on that side of the field.

Mamadou Sakho - 5

Sakho cut a helpless figure at the end of the game, having to deal with undiminishing United pressure for pretty much the entire game with tackles and clearances. He could not be blamed for a bad performance, it was United's quality in the attacking third that was bound to come up trumps.


Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
Delaney flies into his nth challenge as he tries to put a stop to United

Damien Delaney - 5.5

Replacing the injured Scott Dann, Delaney was in for a busy afternoon at Old Trafford as he strived to repel the wave of United attacks. He could not be blamed for any of United's goals and made numerous challenges to prevent Romelu Lukaku from getting too many efforts on goal.

Patrick van Aanholt - 4

van Aanholt contributed very little to the game in either a defensive or attacking sense. He allowed too many crosses to come in from the wing and barely got on the front-foot when Palace looked to test United's back-line.

Andros Townsend - 6

Townsend came close to scoring from a free-kick in the second half - narrowly going wide of the far post. He made a couple of inroads into the home defence, but not to an extent that had United worried.

Luka Milivojevic - 6

Milivojevic was seen sitting very deep in Palace's midfield, almost as a third centre-half - it was that dominant a display by the home side. He plugged gaps in the Palace defence at times, thus helping in keeping the score down thanks to some confident clearances.


Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
Cabaye tried his best, but it was simply not good enough

Yohan Cabaye - 7

In an attacking sense, Cabaye was Palace's most industrious player on the pitch. He looked the only player showing intent going forward, slipping passes through United's defence in the hope of a colleague getting behind the home side to make the most of. The back four were, however, in no mood to play ball.

Jeffrey Schlupp - 5.5

Schlupp was mostly resigned to a defensive role to assist van Aanholt thanks to United's dominance during the game. He was unable to utilize his pace on the offensive, which may have given United's center-halves a test.

Jason Puncheon - 5

Puncheon failed to influence the game from an attacking midfielder's role, finding himself within a host of red shirts every time he attempted to produce a goal-scoring chance. He too was forced to put in a more defensive shift to cover up space left by 'center-back' Milivijevic in midfield.

Bakary Sako - 6

One-way traffic at Old Trafford meant that Bakary Sako hardly got on the ball and received any service. His only real sight of goal was at the half-hour mark when his drive was parried away by de Gea.

Substitutions:

James McArthur - 6

McArthur's introduction initiated a period of Palace pressure, albeit it came to nothing fruitful in the end. He fed the ball to the wingers in order to create chances from the wide areas.

Jairo Riedewald - 6

Naturally a defender, the ex-Ajax man took up a more attacking role during his 20-minute stint on the pitch. His passing in the attacking third was impressive and gave Palace hope of breaking their goal-scoring duck.

Freddie Ladapo - 4

Ladapo made his debut for the Eagles, but it was less than memorable as the striker failed to muster a single shot at goal. Hardly his fault given the service being provided to him, though.

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Shuvam Sinha
ANALYST
Manchester United and Bristol Rovers fan.
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