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Picture explains exactly what happened in build-up to controversial Arsenal goal

Arsenal star Emile Smith Rowe fired past Manchester United’s David de Gea from just outside the area following a Gunners corner in the first half at Old Trafford

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In pictures: Man Utd v Arsenal

A still frame from Manchester United’s clash with Arsenal perfectly explains what happened in the build-up to the Gunners’ controversial opening goal.

Emile Smith Rowe fired past David de Gea from just outside the area following a Gunners corner in the first half at Old Trafford.

There was absolutely nothing wrong with the effort, but as the ball hit the back of the net referee Martin Atkinson noticed De Gea was lying on the ground with his back to play.

It was at this point that Atkinson blew his whistle and checked up on the shot-stopper who appeared to have been fouled.

Fred is seen landing on David de Gea’s ankle
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De Gea was on his feet moments later and after a VAR review, it was correctly confirmed that the goal should stand.

A still frame captures the Man United box as the corner floated into the area.

And it clearly shows that it was De Gea’s Red Devils teammate Fred that stepped on the goalkeeper’s foot and caused him an injury.

Manchester United players surrounded the referee in protest after the goal was given with Cristiano Ronaldo,Bruno Fernandes and Fred all furious with the decision.

But the referee stuck to his guns and the game resumed.

The Red Devils had to wait until nearly half time to get back into the match with Fernandes getting on the scoresheet for United.

And after the break, Ronaldo put the home side ahead with his 800th career goal.

Man United appeared to be very much in the driving seat as a result but Martin Odegaard equalised for the Gunners just 120 seconds later with a well-placed effort.

Ronaldo restored United’s lead from the penalty spot, making it 3-2.

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