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Louis Jackson could make Man Utd debut vs Crystal Palace amid centre-back crisis

Manchester United teenager Louis Jackson could make his debut against Crystal Palace tonight amid the injury crisis at the heart of the defence.

The Red Devils have had plenty of injuries over the course of the campaign and it was confirmed yesterday that Harry Maguire will be out for three weeks with a muscle issue.

Maguire’s setback means that the club are now without five centre-backs for the visit of Selhurst Park. Lisandro Martinez, Raphael Varane, Victor Lindelof and Willy Kambwala are also sidelined.

Jonny Evans, who only returned to team training this week, could be rushed back into the starting line-up alongside Casemiro. However, we don’t see him playing the full 90 minutes in south London.

Manager Erik ten Hag could be forced to look into his options in the academy and in our opinion, Jackson could be rewarded his first-team debut, having made the bench for the last three games.

The 18-year-old has been travelling with the team in recent outings and could finally get the nod. Evans may not be risked for more than an hour with the possibility of a recurrence of his recent injury.

This should open up an opportunity for Jackson, who has made 29 appearances for the Under 18s and 21s this term. Alongside Jackson, Jack Kingdon could also travel with the team tonight.

Kingdon has been training with the first-team in recent weeks amid the defensive crisis and could be named in the matchday squad against Palace, who won’t be an easy opposition to face.

Palace have picked up 10 points from their last four league games and have fared well against United in the past. They have secured seven points from the previous five league meetings.

With Jean-Philippe Mateta, Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise in fine form, United have their work cut out in stopping the hosts from scoring. Despite this, they should be optimistic of a positive result.

The Red Devils need to make a quick start off the blocks against Palace. Bruno Fernandes, who has been carrying a wrist injury, could be crucial to United’s prospects of picking up a victory.

The club are currently eighth in the table and require a win to reclaim the final Europa League spot in sixth from Newcastle United.

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