Manchester United are looking to strengthen their claim for a top four finish in the Premier League as they welcome to Old Trafford a Crystal Palace side, who earned a well contested 1-1 draw with Arsenal last time out.
United have hit a better run themselves of late after confirming their place in the FA Cup semi-finals with a win over West Ham. Following that, they laboured to a 1-0 victory over Aston Villa in a match which once again saw youngster Marcus Rashford grab the headlines.
The Reds are currently four points shy of a top four place with Manchester City sitting above them with superior goal difference, and manager Louis van Gaal needs to ensure his team keep up the pressure on the blues who have, unfortunately for van Gaal, hit something of a good run.
Wednesday night’s opponents find themselves in the other tie of the FA Cup semi-final and look like they may have just about put enough breathing space between themselves and Norwich in the league table to steer off relegation, in a campaign which has seen the Eagles go into freefall since the turn of the year.
With both sides possibly having an eye on their trips to Wembley van Gaal has stated that his side are focused on Wednesday night's clash first, he said: “They (the players) have to focus on the game because we still have to qualify for the Champions League.”
Van Gaal knows that the United faithful will be once again in a very unforgiving mood if the Red Devils slip up against 16th placed Palace.
Van Gaal could make changes to the side after he rested both Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard in the weekend's win over Villa. The Dutchman has no fresh injury concerns and has revealed that Ander Herrera is set to return to the squad following injury.
The away side will be without key players: Yannick Bolasie, Joel Ward, Joe Ledley and Scott Dann who all miss out through injury. Though James McArthur could return after recovering from an ankle ligament problem.
The two sides last met in a 0-0 draw at Selhurst Park earlier in the season, a game where United were heavily criticised for another poor performance, though back then Palace were in excellent form themselves prior to their second half of the season slump.
The last time Palace visited Old Trafford, United ran out 1-0 winners as Juan Mata scored the only goal of the game in the second half.
A good omen for the United fans making their way to Old Trafford for the midweek fixture will be knowing that Palace have never beaten United in the Premier League. The red devils have recorded 10 wins and three draws against the London club.