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Man Utd v Crystal Palace Prediction : Defensive frailties at either end

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Anthony Martial Manchester United. Pic Credit © Anton Ivanov/123rf

Manchester United host Crystal Palace in the Premier League later tonight in a 5:30pm kick-off at Old Trafford, as Brett Curtis eyes the latest Man Utd v Crystal Palace predictions and tips.

It’s the Red Devils’ first game of the Premier League season, with their scheduled match against Burnley last week postponed due to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side’s involvement in the Europa League last month.

Crystal Palace, meanwhile, recorded an excellent 1-0 win at home to Southampton on Saturday, with want-away winger Wilfried Zaha swatting any transfer rumours to one side with a decisive first-half finish.

Despite United’s lack of match practice, they’re 3/10 to beat Palace. The draw is 9/2, with a Palace win 17/2.

Those odds seem massive given Palace won at Old Trafford in the opening weeks of last season and are always a threat away from home with their pace on the break.

However, they’ll be without Patrick van Aanholt, who scored the last-minute winner in the 2-1 win at Old Trafford last campaign. Fellow defenders Gary Cahill, James Tomkins and Nathan Ferguson are also out through injury.

For the hosts, only Phil Jones and Axel Tuanzebe are missing through injury, but Solskjaer has admitted some players are short of fitness.

“Apart from [Jones and Tuanzebe], we don’t have any serious injuries, but, as we’ve said, the players are at different stages of their training programmes,” the 41-year-old told the club’s website.

Last season’s top goalscorers Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford are both 11/8 to score anytime (Sky Bet), with penalty-taker Bruno Fernandes 7/5 (888Sport).

It seems unlikely Mason Greenwood will start given the amount of negative publicity the 18-year-old has attracted in recent weeks. Donny van de Beek may make his debut in his place, and the Dutchman is 13/5 to mark his debut with a goal.

For the visitors, Zaha is 5/1 to score for a second game running. Given he started alongside Jordan Ayew in a 4-4-2 formation last week, this looks a big price for a player of his calibre. His potential strike partner, who scored in the aforementioned win last season, is 9/2.

One price I do have my eye on is Aaron Wan-Bissaka to booked at 5/1 (bet365).

The England right-back was booked in both matches against his former club last season, and with the likes of Zaha, Andros Townsend, Jeffrey Schlupp and potentially Eberechi Eze all capable of drawing fouls in wide areas, I can see Wan-Bissaka having a busy afternoon.

As far as bet365 Bet Builder’s feature goes, I like the look of Over 0 Goals for Man Utd, Over 0 Cards for each team, and Over 1 Corner for Man Utd at 4/5.

That way we don’t need United to win – instead simply to score – at what I consider to be pretty skinny odds in their first match of the season against dangerous opposition.

Moreover, there’s usually cards between these two, and it’s unthinkable United won’t have at least two corners at home.

I'm a freelance sports journalist who has worked for Goal & Bleacher Report amongst others. Get in touch, you're more than welcome to do so via Twitter.

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