Goals from Robin Van Persie and Wayne Rooney were enough for victory in an uninspiring display where Ashley Young was controversial.
Manchester United have defeated Crystal Palace at Old Trafford 2-0 - with two goals from set pieces enough for victory, but it is a game in which the headlines will be dominated by Ashley Young.
Young was at the centre of two of the biggest decisions in the first half, and one that arguably gave United the edge just before half time. The England international has been accused of diving in the past, and on this occasion it is that ugly spectre that has returned.
The first one was indisputable. As he went past Kagisho Dikgacoi he deliberately left his left leg in the challenge and took a tumble that won only himself a yellow card.
The second moment is far more divisive. After sloppy play from Mile Jedinak the winger found himself through on goal with just Dikgacoi, again, for company - who connected with the slightest contact.
Young went down, Dikgacoi was sent off and Robin Van Persie scored the penalty - but replays suggested the foul was outside the area and questions will be asked of whether Young could have remained on his feet.
The second half saw United improve, as Crystal Palace legs grew tired with chasing the ball with just 10 men at their disposal. United created several chances but in the end it was from a dead-ball that they put the nail in the Palace coffin.
Adnan Januzaj, Young's second half replacement, was foul 25 yards out from goal - and Wayne Rooney obliged with a curling free kick to make it 2-0.
However, the result will be marred by the controversy surrounding Young.
image: © Gordon Flood