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  • Writer's pictureBy Yann Tear at Selhurst Park

Sublime Olise leads Eagles blitz of shambolic Man United

Crystal Palace (2) 4 Olise 12, 66, Mateta 40, Mitchell 58

Manchester United (0) 0

In the end, it was not quite a repeat of the famous 5-0 win of 1972 but it came close to being an even more savage outcome.

The Eagles ran a feeble Man Unied ragged from start to finish - the visitors seemingly incapable of halting wave upon wave of shots at goal on a memorable night for the giddy hosts.

Orchestrating it all was Michael Olise. Scorer of two fine goals and putting on a virtuoso display that banished the ghost of Wilfried Zaha. United had no answers and left with tails between their legs.

Boss Erik ten Hag is surely a dead man walking after this. His team could not defend.

United's rearguard obligingly parted like the Red Sea after 12 minutes as the Eagles took the lead. Reds all at sea, if you like.

All it took was a simple sidestepping of the lumbering Casemiro and Olise had verdant space in front of him with no United players attempting to engage.

What else was the Frenchman supposed to do except advance into striking range and drill home past an unprotected Onana?

Bruno Fernandes' absence from the United team was always likely to be felt, but so was Harry Maguire's, who was also kept out by injury. There was a Maguire-shaped hole in that United defence for Olise to run into.

Daniel Munoz was able to claim an assist for the throw-in that gave Olise his run on goal.

Palace looked in the mood for more and with the front three of Olise, Ebe Eze and Jean-Philippe Mateta gliding through challenges, Adam Wharton supplying shrewd passes and Aaron Hughes in fine form snuffing out danger, the prospect of more rewards was there.

That said, United almost drew level when Dean Henderson's attempted punch clear from under his crossbar was missed under pressure from Rasmus Hojlund and it needed ref Jarred Gillet to adjudicate in the keeper's favour after the ball ended in the net.

But this really was looking comfortable for the Eagles and it was no surprise when Mateta ambled around Jonny Evans after taking a pass from Chris Richards and his left footer flashed past Onana and into the net. It was his ninth goal since Oliver Glasner arrived. Some kind of alchemy continues to be at work here.

United continued to look insipid after the break. They did get the ball in the net when Casemiro bundled in a free-kick at the second attempt, but a linesman's flag came to the rescue.

Palace remained the ones creating the danger and a clever one-two between Eze and Olise - backheeling the return pass - deserved a goal rather than the final shot missing the far post by inches. Tyrick Mitchell and Hughes also fired shots at Onana as Ten Hag's men struggled to stem the wave of shots - a weakness which has been well documented.

It was soon 3-0 as Mitchell tucked home a stabbed cross from Joachim Andersen who was at the back post to steer a Wharton chip in the right direction. It was all so easy.

Next, Muniz chased down Casemiro near the byline and pulled the ball back to a waiting Olise. He had all the time in the world to select his preferred corner of netting and Onana was beaten again.

It could have been much worse for United Odsonne Edouard came on and crashed a shot against an upright in injury time. In the end, United got off lightly at 4-0.

That is five without defeat for Palace, who are ending the campaign with a swagger. It was a first ever double over United too and only an 11th league win against them in five times that many encounters

That win at Liverpool a few weeks ago unlocked a wonderful Pandora's Box for Glasner and tonight was his best moment yet at a deliriously happy Selhurst.

Eagles: (3-4-2-1) Henderson - Clyne (Guehi 78) Andersen, Richards - Munoz, Wharton, Hughes (Riedewald 68), Mitchell - Olise (Schlupp 85), Eze (Ayew 85) - Mateta (Edouard 68)

United: (4-2-3-1) Onana- Wan-Bissaka, Casemiro, Evans, Dalot - Mainoo, Eriksen - Antony (Amrabat 61), Mount (Diallo 80), Garnacho - Hojlund (Wheatley 80)


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