- A number of Man United’s key players rested
- United finish 6th
- Crystal Palace finish 13th
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With the Europa League final, against Ajax, on Wednesday — perhaps you’ve heard Jose Mourinho talk about it in recent weeks — a whole host of Manchester United’s key players were rested for Sunday’s Premier League finale — just as Mourinho has done in his side’s handful of final games — against Crystal Palace.
In the end, United’s lineup mattered very little, as a side made up of a half-dozen academy/reserve players and a few first-team regulars/fringe players had very little trouble against a Palace side with nothing left to play for in terms of the PL table.
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21-year-old academy product Josh Harrop opened the scoring right on the quarter-hour mark, firing a right-footed shot just inside the far post to beat Wayne Hennessey.
Four minutes later, Paul Pogba doubled United’s lead (above video) with a calm, collected finish after Jesse Lingard played the perfectly weighted through ball into acres of space. It was Pogba’s fifth PL goal of the season.
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Though United failed to finish in the
top-four top-five in the PL, Wednesday’s final in Stockholm, Sweden, represents a golden ticket into next season’s UEFA Champions League. Given the way Mourinho threw away the final month of the league season, his reputation needs a win just as badly and the club’s bank accounts.