Manchester United made a winning start to life under interim boss Ralf Rangnic thanks to Fred’s 77th-minute winner over Crystal Palace.
A more energetic United display looked like going unrewarded against a dogged Crystal Palace outfit until Fred struck first-time from Mason Greenwood’s lay-off to send a superb 20-yard effort curling over Vicente Guaita and into the top corner.
The Red Devils created numerous decent chances, but without really looking as though they were going to score.
Indeed Palace, who were looking to win for a third successive season at Old Trafford, came close themselves when Jordan Ayew turned James Tomkins header across the face of goal and narrowly wide of the far post.
The victory meant that Rangnick emulated three of United’s other four new managers since Sir Alex Ferguson retired in 2013 by winning his first match at the helm, with Louis van Gaal the only man to fail.
Palace remain 12th on 16 points while United climb to sixth – three points adrift of the Champions League places.