Victor Lindelof

United 3 Palace 1: Eight things we learned

Tuesday 19 July 2022 13:10

Every pre-season game - including Aston Villa (10:45 BST Saturday 23 July) - will be shown live in our app and on

Manchester United made it three wins from three on Tour 2022, with a convincing 3-1 victory over Crystal Palace at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Anthony Martial scored again, while Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford netted in the second half to add to their burgeoning pre-season tallies, while, despite a late concession to Joel Ward and red card for Will Fish, it was a team performance that will no doubt please Erik ten Hag, against an admittedly depleted Palace side.

Here are eight things which caught the eye of our reporter at the stadium...


While those back in Manchester bask in record-breaking heat, it’s winter in Australia and Tuesday saw the city set its lowest morning temperatures in almost four years. Despite experiencing sun and blue skies all day, the mercury had barely risen by the time the game kicked off, with the players walking out when it was around seven-degrees Celsius – something you’d think you’re more likely to get at Selhurst Park in December than on a pre-season tour! It was all a far cry from last Tuesday in Bangkok, anyway, but fingers crossed for warmer climes when we get to Perth…


The adidas 2022/23 away kit was unveiled at 09:00 BST on Saturday and it’s certainly gone down a storm with fans here in Melbourne – the city which held the shirt launch event at the weekend. This was the first match in which it was sported and it looked as good on the pitch as it did in all of our glossy marketing snaps.


Our first summer signing had been a half-time substitute in each of United’s previous two friendlies and the Dutchman impressed against both Liverpool and Melbourne Victory, with the Reds not conceding a goal in the 90 minutes he was on the pitch in those games. This time he was given the nod from the off by Ten Hag and he was arguably our standout player in the opening half, proving vital in the build-up to Martial's opener...


A much-discussed element of Ten Hag’s tactic is his preference for attacking full-backs. At Ajax last season, Noussair Mazraoui and Nicolas Tagliafico weighed in with 11 goal contributions between them in 34 Eredivisie games and they were a vital channel through which the team played. Erik was presumably delighted then by how Martial’s 17th-minute strike came about, with Malacia switching the ball across the pitch for Diogo Dalot. The Portuguese right-back’s excellent reverse pass then found Anthony, who poked the ball home for his third goal in as many pre-season games.

Martial scores his third goal of Tour 2022 Video

Martial scores his third goal of Tour 2022

Tyrell Malacia and Diogo Dalot combined to set up Anthony Martial's opener against Palace, live in the United App...


Martial returned to United in the summer with a point to prove, having spent the second half of the last campaign on loan with Sevilla. The Frenchman scored just twice in 23 appearances across 2021/22 and, although pre-season games don’t tend to enter the record books, he’d already beaten that after just 107 minutes of friendly action. Tony had gone close twice before eventually succeeding, with the second of those efforts forcing Butland into a fingertip save which actually caused the Palace stopper to be withdrawn due to injury. His pre-season scoring run is now United's best since 2007/08.


Erik substituted all 10 outfield players at half-time in the wins over Liverpool and Melbourne Victory, but only Scott McTominay left the field at the interval this time, and he was replaced by Donny van de Beek. Our no.34 took under five minutes to make an impact, as United scored a superb team goal on a par with any seen on tour so far. It looked like Martial had gone too far across goal initially, but he ushered the ball to van de Beek, who displayed stunning vision and great selflessness to find the incoming and unmarked Rashford. 2-0, too good.

Martial posts best pre-season run since 2007


Anthony netted for the third successive Tour 2022 match, against Palace, as he continues to look sharp.


United’s 11th goal of pre-season didn’t take long to arrive and it would be the seventh contributed by the Rashford, Martial, Sancho triumvirate already this summer. The three attackers are clearly thriving under the new management – they look fit, quick and eager to impress in both the attacking and defensive areas of play and the best thing is that all three can slot in anywhere across the front line. There are still three games to play before the team to face Brighton & Hove Albion in our Premier League opener on 7 August is named, but carry on like this and the top of the teamsheet will pick itself.


Sendings-off in friendlies are few and far between, but referee Adam King was left with no choice but to show red to Fish with five minutes left on the clock. The young defender, introduced midway through the second half as Erik made a raft of changes, was the last man and brought down Victor Akinwale as he ran through on goal.

Every pre-season game - including Aston Villa (10:45 BST Saturday 23 July) - will be shown live in our app and on