- Palace goalless through seven PL matches
- United moves top of league
- Mata scores in 3′
- Lukaku nabs seventh PL goal of season
Palace becomes the fifth team in English top flight history to lose its first seven league matches, and is still yet to score a league goal.
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Any hope for a remarkable upset was deflated when Marcus Rashford cooked Joel Ward before sliding a pass through traffic — and Romelu Lukaku’s legs — for Mata to bury. It was 1-0 after 145 seconds.
Mike Dean did not see a Patrick Van Aanholt foul on Marouane Fellaini as penalty worthy or it could have been 2-0 inside of 10 minutes.
Crystal Palace won a succession of corners in a bid to level, and Wayne Hennessey claimed a United free kick at the other end as the match reached its half-hour mark at 1-0.
David De Gea made a stop on Bakary Sako‘s 32nd minute lash. With the way United’s defending, that looked like Palace’s last chance to go level when Ashley Young‘s good work from the left swept over the line and onto the boot of a back-post running Fellaini. 2-0.
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Palace was down 3-0 in the 48th minute when Fellaini darted between a pair of defenders to head Rashford’s free kick into the goal.
Hennessey saved Young off a Henrikh Mkhitaryan feed in the 58th minute. And Lukaku’s electric 71st minute dribble ended with his surprising miss to the left of the goal.