Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic score in Manchester United’s win over Crystal Palace

Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s goal in the 88th minute earned Manchester United three points on the road at Selhurst Park. The win keep them in the sixth place – three points behind Tottenham Hotspur, who are on fifth and six points behing Manchester City, who are on fourth.

United captain Wayne Rooney was back in the starting line-up. It was slow start to the game but Marcos Rojo’s horrendous challenge on Wilfried Zaha in the 38th minute stoked up the passion in the stadium and raised tempers.

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But finally the breakthrough came in first half stoppage time. Juan Mata’s free-kick found Ibrahimovic, he tried to chest it, the ball came off his hand and fell to Pogba, who looked a shade offside.

The French midfielder slotted home and his all-round display was arguably his best performance in a United shirt.

Alan Pardew changed the game at half-time, bringing on Joe Ledley for the ineffective Mathieu Flamini and that turned the game. Palace had more energy and tested David de Gea time and time again in the second half.

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The Spaniard made a stunning diving save to deny McArthur’s 63rd minute shot. Palace finally got their equaliser after 66 minutes. Joel Ward began the move down the left, his pass was brilliantly flicked on by centre half Damien Delaney and McArthur held his nerve to bury a shot low past De Gea.

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United went in search of a winner and Mata had an effort ruled out for offside, even though TV replays suggested it should have stood. Rooney also came close to giving Red Devils the lead but he was brilliantly denied by Palace’s goalie.

But it was again Pogba who played a major role, this time a wonderful through-ball that released Ibrahimovic, who raced through before burying a shot into the far corner.