Crystal Palace 1 Manchester United 1
Manchester United were denied a 10th consecutive win in all competitions, suffering late heartbreak in a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
Bruno Fernandes scored on the cusp of first-half stoppage time to give his side a well-deserved half-time lead, and for much of the second half, it looked as though that would be enough to propel United to yet another victory.
But Erik ten Hag’s side were dealt a cruel late blow as a stunning Michael Olise free-kick found the top right-hand corner in injury time, in a frustrating end to the night for the Reds.
Reds debutant Wout Weghorst provided a new dimension at the head of United’s attack, showing some clever early touches as Erik ten Hag’s men set about breaking the deadlock from the off.
Luke Shaw had the visitors’ first presentable opening, connecting sweetly on the half-volley to meet Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s cross at the far post, firing back across goal and just wide.
The threat remained down both flanks. On the right, Antony nudged off Tyrick Mitchell to latch onto Casemiro’s ball over the defence, with our Brazilian unfortunate to see his lobbed effort over Guaita crash into the side netting. As for the left-hand side, Weghorst glanced just over from Shaw’s whipped cross.
Shaw was at the heart of plenty of United’s first-half play, winning a free-kick in an inviting position after Cheick Doucoure’s challenge, but Marcus Rashford’s resulting free-kick was wide of Guaita’s post.
For all the visitors’ authority, United had David De Gea to thank for a sensational save five minutes before half-time, as the Spaniard magnificently tipped Odsonne Edouard’s curling 20-yard effort onto the crossbar.
A lovely move at the other end, though, saw United take the lead just three minutes later. Eriksen exchanged passes with Rashford to find himself in crossing range down the left and when the Dane pulled it back, Fernandes kept his composure in the box to pick his spot and dispatch past Guaita, to give the Reds a deserved half-time lead.
Fernandes threatened to score again on the other side of the half-time whistle, running onto Wan-Bissaka’s half-cleared cross at lightning speed before his effort was blocked from close range.
Patrick Vieira’s men briefly appeared to gain in confidence, yet still the nearest they would come to finding an equaliser – for the timebeing – was a wild Ebere Eze volley high and wide of goal.
Ten Hag looked to re-energise his side with Scott McTominay and Alejandro Garnacho emerging from the bench, and the former had a strong shout for a penalty moments after coming on, but the referee Robert Jones deemed Chris Richards’ challenge a fair one.
De Gea was then required to make another brilliant save from Marc Guehi’s bullet header, just moments after Jeffrey Schlupp and Jordan Ayew were introduced for the hosts.
There were then a couple of dreaded moments for the Reds in the final ten minutes. Firstly, Casemiro was booked for a challenge on Wilfried Zaha late on and with that being his fifth yellow card of the season, it ruled him out of Sunday’s trip to Arsenal.
A second blow came in the first minute of stoppage-time, when Olise curled a free-kick from all of 30 yards into the top right-hand corner via the underside of the crossbar, with nothing even an inspired De Gea could do to stop it.
The Reds still might have snatched back victory at the death, with Casemiro desperately close to applying a finish touch to Fernandes’ corner before Garnacho’s rasping shot from the edge of the box was well held by Guaita.
United were grateful for a crucial Wan-Bissaka challenge to halt Zaha as he went through one-on-one at the other end as Ten Hag’s men were made to settle for a point.
Palace: Guaita, Mitchell, Guehi, Richards, Clyne, Hughes (Milivojevic 84), Doucoure (Schlupp 71), Zaha, Mateta (Eze 56), Olise, Edouard (Ayew 71).
Unused substitutes: Johnstone, Ward, Tomkins, Riedewald, Ozoh.
Goal: Olise 90+1.
Booked: Hughes 77.
United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Shaw, Casemiro, Fernandes, Eriksen (Fred 83), Antony (Garnacho 69), Weghorst (McTominay 69), Rashford.
Unused substitutes: Heaton, Lindelof, Maguire, Malacia, Pellistri, Elanga.
Goal: Fernandes 43.
Booked: Martinez 47, Casemiro 80.