We round up the key Fantasy Premier League (FPL) talking points from Wednesday night’s meeting between Crystal Palace and Manchester United.
A comfortable win and clean sheet for Manchester United was dramatically snatched away in stoppage time by Michael Olise‘s (£5.4m) stunning free kick.
By cancelling out Bruno Fernandes’ (£9.8m) opener, Olise denied the Red Devils a tenth successive win in all competitions that would’ve seen them move into second place.
BLANKS FOR SHAW AND RASHFORD
Luke Shaw’s (£5.1m) two million owners were probably checking their live ranks as the game petered out – clean sheet points but nowhere near any bonuses. Suddenly, he ended up on just the two appearance points, although he did go close with a 16th-minute sliced shot that whistled wide.
There was also a first-half cross that debutant Wout Weghorst (£6.0m) headed over. Managers may even opt to bench Shaw for Sunday’s crunch trip to Arsenal, now that the brilliant Casemiro (£4.9m) will be suspended for picking up his fifth booking of the season.
As for Marcus Rashford (£7.1m), his effective ownership numbers are so high that goals or assists wouldn’t have made much impact on rankings. However, he did have a match-leading four shots and was involved in their goal, playing a one-two with Christian Eriksen (£6.3m) before the Dane pulled back to find Fernandes near the penalty spot.
The four-match scoring streak is over for Rashford but managers will keep the faith, especially with a possible Double Gameweek 22 on the way.
FERNANDES’ FABULOUS FORM
UPDATE ON BLANK AND DOUBLE GAMEWEEKS
Still competing in four competitions, Man United’s schedule is tight and no midweek can afford to be wasted, making it likely that their previously-postponed home meeting with Leeds United will be moved to create a Double Gameweek 22.
Yet, if either side needs an FA Cup replay – Erik ten Hag’s men host Reading whilst Leeds face either Boreham Wood or Accrington Stanley – the match will have to wait even longer.
All other Man United midweeks between now and the March international break are reserved for their two-legged League Cup semi-finals, Europa League journey and an FA Cup fifth-round tie should they proceed.
In fact, the situation will worsen if they or Brighton and Hove Albion reach the quarter-final, as it will force a Blank Gameweek 28 on top of the possible Blank Gameweek 25 of League Cup final weekend.
Crystal Palace are fine for 25 but their 28 depends on whether Arsenal remain in the FA Cup.
MARTIAL AND DALOT ABSENT
Those managers still with Anthony Martial (£6.6m) will be disappointed to see the Double Gameweek end with one solitary point. Withdrawn at half-time against Manchester City due to a leg problem, he wasn’t named in the squad for Selhurst Park. Neither was hurt right-back Diogo Dalot (£4.7m).
It meant that Weghorst made his FPL return less than a year after frustrating the community during numerous Double Gameweek blanks.
Meanwhile, absent for Palace was centre-back Joachim Andersen (£4.5m), with a calf complaint set to keep him on the sidelines for three weeks.
Crystal Palace XI: Guaita; Clyne, Guehi, Richards, Mitchell; Olise, Doucoure (Schlupp 71′), Hughes (Milivojevic 84′), Zaha; Edouard (Ayew 71′), Mateta (Eze 56′)
Manchester United XI: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Shaw; Casemiro, Eriksen (Fred 83′); Antony (Garnacho 69′), Fernandes, Rashford; Weghorst (McTominay 69′)