Manchester United heralded the arrival of Ralf Rangnick with a superlative display that saw them sink a lackadaisical Crystal Palace. They kept on knocking at the door in the first half of the game as wave after wave of Manchester United attacks deluged in the Palace half only to be refuted by a scrambling yet persistent Palace defence.
Despite starting the second half on a much better note than the first, the Eagles had their wings clipped as Fred whipped an exquisite curler that proved to be the solitary difference between the two sides.
The story of the match between Manchester United and Crystal Palace
United was gassed up ever since the word go that saw them pressing the Eagles relentlessly as the latter needed a few crucial interventions from Wilfried Zaha, Tomkins and Nathaniel Clyne backed vociferously by a resolute Guaita.
Ronaldo had an early shy at the net as he was teed up by Rashford who was fed with a delectable ball by a wily Sancho. CR7 couldn’t steer his effort properly as he bundled in straight into the arms of Guaita.
Fred had an early effort of him blocked brilliantly by Tomkins as Sancho picked up a drifting delivery from Diogo Dalot and laid it in the stride of the Brazilian only to see his transcending strike ricocheting off Tomkins.
Manchester was simply too fast for the Eagles to contain as another scouring ball from Maguire saw Ronaldo laying it off for Bruno Fernandes only to see his meek effort saved by a diving Guaita.
United almost rattled the impasse at the edge of the first half after an ecstatic one-two between Diogo Dalot and Scott McTominay only for the former to graze it past the woodwork with the entire goal gaping at him and Guaita caught off the hook.
The visitors gained somewhat of a foothold in the second half as the waves of attack that United subjected them to stall for a while with the Eagles fancying their chances only to be refuted by the defensive midfield duo of United.
United took some time to regain their shooting form as it came from a free-kick with Alex Telles grazing the woodwork from the edge of the penalty box. However, using Manchester United’s numbers in their own attacking third, Crystal Palace caught the Devils’ rearguard off their hook and their resultant counterattack compelled United to concede a corner.
The resultant move from the corner almost opened up the United goal as David De Gea was beaten from a low cross engineered by Ayew only for Kouyate to miss it by whiskers despite a full-stretched dive.
With end-to-end football in both halves, Manchester United finally managed to rattle the impasse with a clinical curler from their Brazilian signing Fred as he slotted the ball home from an impeccable pass laid in his path by Mason Greenwood. Fred took his time, positioned him before the doors closed around him and sent the ball flying into the top corner past a stretched Guaita.
The captain took a knock on the head after a rattling clash with Edouard desperately trying to grab the header but he stood tall with a cut on his forehead and defended United for the rest of the game. Twitter couldn’t keep calm as Manchester United secured the first victory under the chaperonage of Ralf Rangnick with a clinical showdown, exuding glimpses of Gegenpressing.
— Alex Nield 🇾🇪 (@famousalexnield) December 5, 2021
FT: Manchester United 1-0 Crystal Palace.
First game, first victory for Ralf Rangnick! pic.twitter.com/vfPsg82JwI
— 𝐀𝐅𝐂 𝐀𝐉𝐀𝐗 💎 (@TheEuropeanLad) December 5, 2021Advertisement
George’s first @ManUtd match. Those who know me, know how much this means to me. George and I watched @Cristiano on the Old Trafford turf just like I watched him with my old man 17 years ago. 🙏
— Adam (@powsney) December 5, 2021Advertisement
"The kid Diogo is fantastic, I think Gary Neville must be thinking now that Manchester United has a right-back for 10 years."
Hope this helps pic.twitter.com/5YcU96Z1dYAdvertisement
— Mike (@MikeLUHG0) December 5, 2021
– Ralf Ragnick is the man!!
– Pastor Fred was preaching!!!
– Telles was solid both defensively & offensively.
– Ask Zaha bout Dalot's performance!!
– Maguire & Lindelof😭😭😍😍😍😍❤!
– Not Bruno's best game
– Ronaldo is still🐐Advertisement
Manchester united might be back!!!!! pic.twitter.com/fwRNJMcPtG
— Xtra (@CAV7NI_TREY) December 5, 2021
We are witnessing the end of Wan Bissakas Manchester United career
Dalot is ending that guy
— Rick (@Rick_Enoughsed) December 5, 2021
A lot of positive to take away from today’s game @ManUtd 🙌🏿🙌🏿Advertisement
— Usain St. Leo Bolt (@usainbolt) December 5, 2021
Manchester United won possession in the final third 12 times vs. Crystal Palace.Advertisement
That’s the most they’ve done so in a Premier League match since Sir Alex Ferguson retired.
What an impact Ralf Rangnick has made already! 📈 pic.twitter.com/z1rigMRwnb
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) December 5, 2021Advertisement
Ralf Rangnick wins his first game as coach of Manchester United ✅ pic.twitter.com/GrPTTC9dYV
— B/R Football (@brfootball) December 5, 2021Advertisement
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) December 5, 2021Advertisement