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Stop Martial and you stop Manchester United, says Pardew

Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew said stopping Anthony Martial was crucial as the Eagles held Manchester United to a 0-0 draw on Saturday.

The Red Devils failed to score for a third successive match at Selhurst Park with Louis van Gaal admitting after the match his side “created nothing”.

Martial began the game out wide before switching to a more central role, to no avail, and Pardew says his side had targeted the teenager as United’s main threat.

“We didn't give Martial an inch,” he told reporters after the game. “Not an inch.

“It was a big target for us to stop him and we felt that if we could stop him we could stop their creative angle.

“And when you take into account his age, that's some recommendation.

“I have to say that he's an impressive young player. I think he handled himself very well today, because he would have felt our presence around him, and still he had moments in the game.

“With such a young player, he'll have to be very, very careful, the Manchester United manager, to keep his exuberance there. Because we're all looking to stop him.”

Captain Wayne Rooney came in for criticism after another quiet display but Pardew defended the England international who he feels lacked service.

“In defence of Wayne I didn't really think he got a lot of good possession, I didn't think he had a lot of chances to create anything,” he added.

“I thought we bossed the second half, and in the first half he didn't get a lot of crosses, so it's very difficult for him to have an influence on the game.