Not many Manchester United players came out of the weekend’s display with any credit.

It is not a game Bruno Fernandes will remember fondly either, as it was his first ever Premier League defeat.

United lost the game 3-1 to Crystal Palace, but Fernandes largely held up his end of the bargain.

Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
(Photo by Martin Rickett – Pool/Getty Images)

True, the display saw some erratic passing from the Portuguese maestro, but many games do.

It is part and parcel of his high-risk, high-reward approach, and to complain about it would be akin to moaning about Eric Cantona’s aggression.

Creating chances

Fernandes created more chances than any player on the pitch at Old Trafford.

The January signing made five key passes in total. The rest of the United team made seven combined.

Palace created 11 chances, with Wilfried Zaha coming close to matching Fernandes with four.

The difference was that Palace were sharper, and more clinical.


Fernandes was not surrounded by strong performers, with United’s front three looking off the pace.

Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford both failed to register a shot on target, likewise Dan James and Mason Greenwood in each half.

Fernandes also managed 123 touches, more than any player on the pitch.

(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

Return stronger

Fernandes is likely to sit out in midweek ahead of United facing Brighton next weekend.

The Portuguese star scored twice at the Amex at the end of last season and needs a similarly strong display this time around to kickstart United’s campaign.

But what we saw from Fernandes against Palace was not really the problem.

The problem was his teammates. They need to lift their performances next weekend, if not, United face a second straight league defeat.

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