Crystal Palace are still searching for their first Premier League win of the season after they were defeated by newcomers Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.

In a heated affair which saw Blades fans incensed by a non-VAR call, a John Lundstram strike shortly after half-time turned out to be the only goal of the game.

Appeals for a handball on Joel Ward in the penalty area were dismissed by the officials before substitute James McCarthy was left angered by a late follow-through from George Baldock.

Palace have now failed to score in either of their opening two league games, having drawn 0-0 with Everton at Selhurst Park on opening weekend. The Eagles are 14th in the table with one point.

Here are five things we learned…

READ: The refereeing decision that puzzled Hodgson at Bramall Lane

Should United have had a penalty?

Bramall Lane was already loud by kick-off, as the Blades played their first league game back in the top-flight since 2006, but what drew the greatest reception was the penalty appeal.

Enda Stevens’ powerful strike towards goal was blocked by Ward, but home supporters were certain it was a stonewall penalty.

Looking at the replays, it was the correct decision. Ward’s arms were tight to his chest and it hit his elbow as he turned away. It’d have been more surprising if it was given.

Lundstram’s goal was good – but the Blades could have been out of sight

With enough clinical edge, the hosts could have won the game by three clear goals. Palace struggled to contain them, particularly in the second-half, and failed to do enough in reply.

How David McGoldrick missed that chance at the far post is beyond me. Maybe he didn’t know much about it, or couldn’t get the right connection, but United didn’t have a better one than that all game.

With enough quality, Palace would have been severely punished. Away to Bramall Lane was never going to be easy, particularly given the circumstances, but they were a tad fortunate at times.

READ: Hodgson: There's no 'magic wand' to fix things at Palace

Zaha was … poor

It’s very easy to be drawn into what is going through the Palace star’s mind in the aftermath of this summer transfer window, but Zaha strikes me a player who does all his talking on the pitch.

The problem was United were ready for him and their defence did excellently to nullify his threat all game, despite him drawing a lot of fouls. He couldn’t find an avenue through them.

With the lacklustre performance will come a harsher spotlight, particularly given what transpired over the summer, but it wasn’t a pretty performance.

Were United lucky to still have 11 men?

The south Yorkshire clash began to intensify with every passing minute, and one turning point which will be discussed was the Baldock foul and, subsequently, McCarthy booking.

Although Baldock looked squarely focused on blocking the ball, it’s understandable why McCarthy was furious with him. It looked quite bad, on reflection.

Some have said Baldock was fortunate to still be on the pitch. I’m not sure about that, but he probably deserved a booking. Both players did, in reality.

READ: Player ratings from Sheffield United 1 Crystal Palace 0

This is going to be (another) long season if Palace don’t fix their shyness in front of goal

We appear to be seeing some of the same problems creep up from last season into this one with Palace, notably their failure to score consistently.

Indeed, without trying to sound too alarmist, we are only two games into the season. It’s early days and there’s certainly no need to panic.

But it’s not going to get any easier. Manchester United are up next and Tottenham will be soon after a couple of games. Now is the time to find those shooting boots.