Manchester United weren’t exactly going to struggle with the task of Crystal Palace.
The Red Devils have already established a strong title challenge alongside their city rivals and only Stoke have emerged from a league game against United with a point to show for it.
Roy Hodgson’s Palace, on the other hand, are treading water at the foot of the table with six defeats from six games and not a single goal to their name.
As a result, there were few spectators surprised in the stands of Old Trafford when Jose Mourinho’s men broke the deadlock inside just three minutes.
Marcus Rashford skinned Joel Ward alive on the left flank before turning provider for Juan Mata who scored his first goal of the season with a measured finish.
Two of United’s less fashionable players then combined to make it 2-0 before half-time.
Ashley Young unravelled the Palace defence with a sensational cross that was met by Marouane Fellaini who made it three goals in four games at home.
Nevertheless, all that considered, Mourinho wasn’t overly impressed with his team’s performance.
His behaviour on the touchline cut an uncanny resemblance to that of Pep Guardiola who was also unhappy, despite leading, with his Manchester City side’s first-half showing against the same opponents.
Mourinho, though, had two particular qualms with some of the media at Old Trafford hearing the Special One’s grievances first hand.
One such witness proved Samuel Lukhurst of the Manchester Evening News and he posted the following tweet during the game:
It’s difficult to know who will be more insulted – Crystal Palace or Romelu Lukaku?
As Mourinho is alluding to, the Red Devils have certainly played better football this season and their comfort against Palace has provoked some sloppy play in midfield.
Meanwhile, his second issue is very much related to the former with Lukaku’s notoriously poor first touch damaging his hold-up play and United’s combinations in the final third.
It seems it’s not just City and Liverpool fans that think Lukaku needs a bit of training ground practice, then.
Ultimately, however, when you boast a record of nine goals in just eight games, you should only take so much notice of touchline whinging.
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