Football Previews

Manchester United v Crystal Palace preview, predictions and possible XIs

By Steve Jennings

Published: 13:08, 22 August 2019

Manchester United will be expected to continue their unbeaten start to the season when they welcome Crystal Palace to Old Trafford on Saturday.

The Red Devils followed up their opening weekend 4-0 thrashing of Chelsea with a draw at Wolves that probably would have been a victory if not for Paul Pogba’s missed penalty.

Palace, meanwhile, are in dire straits having failed to score in their opening two matches of the campaign. Roy Hodgson’s side drew 0-0 with Everton at home before a 1-0 defeat to newly-promoted Sheffield United.

So, will United keep up their positive start or will the Eagles swoop and take away at least a point?

Read on for our predictions, key players, TV info and team news.

When is Man Utd v Crystal Palace and where can I watch live?

Competition: Premier League

Venue: Old Trafford

Date: Saturday 24 August

Kick-off: 3pm BST

TV coverage (UK): N/A

Last five meetings: Man Utd v Crystal Palace

27 February 2019: Palace 1-3 Man Utd

24 November 2018: Man Utd 0-0 Palace

5 March 2018: Palace 2-3 Man Utd

20 September 2017: Man Utd 4-0 Palace

21 May 2017: Man Utd 2-0 Palace

Aggregate score: Man Utd (WDWWW) 12-3 Palace (LDLLL)

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Ones to watch

Man Utd: Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Wan-Bissaka will be coming up against his former club for the first time since leaving Palace for United in the summer. The 21-year-old has picked up exactly where he left off last season, proving just about impossible to beat in one-on-one situations. He will have to be at his best against Palace’s speedy wingers, though he is, of course, the best possible man for the job having trained against them in the not so distant past.

Key stat: Wan-Bissaka made nine tackles against Wolves on Monday, the most made by any player in a single Premier League game so far this season.

Crystal Palace: Wilfried Zaha

Another player up against his former club – albeit one that made less of an impression at Old Trafford – is Zaha. More intriguingly, he will be in direct competition with Wan-Bissaka if Roy Hodgson decides to employ Zaha on the left, as there have been calls for him to do so. The 26-year-old struggled to make an impact against Sheffield United after returning to the team amid tireless transfer talk. Perhaps he will be more motivated to perform at Old Trafford.

Key stat: Zaha has scored six goals in his last eight Premier League away games.

Zaha during his short-lived stint at Man Utd

Team news

Man Utd

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side haven’t suffered any fresh injury concerns since last time out and so could be unchanged for Saturday’s clash. Eric Bailly remains sidelined with a knee problem, but Phil Jones and Chris Smalling will be hoping to return to the bench after being dropped from the squad at Wolves.

Predicted XI: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw; McTominay, Pogba; James, Lingard Rashford; Martial.

Crystal Palace

James McCarthy and Gary Cahill are likely to make their first starts for Palace, while Mamadou Sakho (knee) and James Tomkins (groin) remain unavailable. Max Meyer could be sacrificed for McCarthy, with Hodgson potentially opting for a three-man midfield flanked by Zaha and Andros Townsend.

Predicted XI: Guaita; Ward, Cahill, Dann, Van Aanholt; Townsend, McArthur, Milivojevic, McCarthy, Zaha; Benteke.

Squawka prediction

United will be keen to bounce back from the disappointment of dropping points at Wolves, a game from which they may have been happy with a point if not for the fact they missed a penalty. Palace do not look like scoring any time soon and will find it extra difficult against the likes of Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire. The hosts shouldn’t have too many problems.

Man Utd 2-0 Crystal Palace