Man United lacked zip and urgency in Palace defeat, says Solskjaer

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer lamented a lack of "zip and urgency" in the first half as Manchester United lost 2-1 to Crystal Palace at home on Saturday.

Jordan Ayew gave the visitors the lead in the 32nd minute and, even though Daniel James equalised in the 89th minute, Patrick van Aanholt fired past David de Gea in injury-time to secure the three points for Roy Hodgson's side.

Solskjaer told MUTV: "We didn't really have that zip and urgency about us and they scored with the first chance.

"Just a long kick, it should never happen, that's poor defending. But in the second half, I thought we were excellent. We were pressing, pushing, creating chances, just not scoring. We didn't have that Midas touch today."

Marcus Rashford could have scored with a penalty in the 70th minute, but he smashed his effort against the post after Scott McTominay had been fouled in the box.

But Solskjaer has backed Rashford to take another spot-kick.

"I'm sure Marcus will look at his penalty again, but he'll definitely step up again and score."

Rashford's miss came after days of debate over who should be United's penalty-taker, following Paul Pogba's miss from the spot in their 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers last Monday.

But Match of the Day pundits Ian Wright and Danny Murphy said the Englishman, who had scored his two other penalties this year, was "unlucky".

Said Wright. "It's so unlucky that it's gone out of play for a goal kick!"

Murphy added: "At least he took it with conviction. I don't think this week's events in terms of Pogba and the debate around the penalty has affected him, you're talking about an inch or two."

There was also VAR frustration for Solskjaer as he believed his team were denied two further penalties, while Palace defender Gary Cahill was given only a yellow card when he brought down Anthony Martial when he appeared to be the last man just outside the area.

"There were a few other (penalties we should have been given), definitely," said Solskjaer.

"Fine margins, isn't it? We're disappointed of course that we didn't win the game...

"We know these five days have been disappointing, one point instead of six, so we need to stick together and prepare for Southampton next Saturday ."