A 2-0 away win over Crystal Palace sounds comfortable. But it was not quite that simple, not for the first 78 minutes.

Goals from Marcus Rashford and then Anthony Martial were enough to give United the three points we needed.

Manchester United are just two wins away from securing a Champions League place.

Here is a look at who we picked as United’s three best players in the win at Selhurst Park…

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Marcus Rashford

Goal number 22 of the season for Marcus Rashford could not have been timed any better.

United had played poorly in the first half and appeared to be wobbling just before half-time.

Then the ball broke to Rashford in the penalty area, he twisted and turned, before slotting the ball past a helpless Vicente Guaita.

United needed the goal, and it was just reward for Rashford, who was among the team’s livelier attackers in the first half.

While his second half miss against Southampton will haunt him, he appears to be hitting form at the right time, with two goals in his last two games.

Rashford’s all round play was strong too. He provided the assist for Martial’s game clinching second goal.

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David de Gea

As early as the second minute David de Gea was called into action when Wilfried Zaha shot at goal.

He needed to make two more saves in the first half, with one of them a testing free-kick just before half-time.

 

Again in the second half he did everything he needed when he was called upon.

This was the kind of performance we expect from the Spaniard, playing his 401st game for the club.

He had to work for his clean sheet, and it was deserved. When a goalkeeper saves everything thrown his way, it makes life so much easier for the rest of the team.

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Nemanja Matic

Bruno Fernandes won Manchester United’s man-of-the-match from BT Sport, but it was only after Nemanja Matic came on that he took control of the game.

Matic was brought on as a substitute midway through the second half, just as Crystal Palace were coming back into the match.

The Serbian had a big influence on the contest, helping United to take control of the midfield.

From here Fernandes was able to get more involved, and nearly scored when he hit the post.

But there is a growing reliance on Matic, who was rested from the start. United were not quite the same without him, and when he came on he really proved his value.

He kept it simple, completing 92 per cent of his passes, and that was enough to help United step it up, with the more attacking players going forward to do the damage and get the much needed second goal.

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