Man United top Arsenal on Cristiano double
Sports Desk, Dec 2 (EFE).- Less than 20 minutes after becoming only the second man in the history of the sport to score 800 goals for club and country, Cristiano Ronaldo scored No. 801 from the spot to give Manchester United a 3-2 victory against resurgent Arsenal.
The second win in their last eight Premier League matches lifted United to seventh with 21 points, while the Gunners remain fifth in the table on 23 points.
But the night did not begin well for the hosts at Old Trafford, as Arsenal took the lead in the 13th minute on a goal by Emile Smith Rowe with United goalkeeper David De Gea down.
Referee Martin Atkinson only noticed De Gea was down after the ball was in the net.
Thinking that the keeper had been fouled by an attacking player, Atkinson was ready to disallow the goal until VAR informed him that De Gea was hurt in a brush with one of his own teammates ahead of the Arsenal corner.
United grumbled, but the goal stood and Gabriel Martinelli flubbed a great opportunity to extend the advantage in the 38th minute, six minutes before Bruno Fernandes brought the hosts level with his first goal in a United shirt since Sept. 11.
Ronaldo forced a save from Gunners keeper Aaron Ramsdale early in the second half and put the Red Devils up 2-1 in the 52nd minute with his 800th career goal.
The joy was short-lived as Martin Odegaard equalized for Arsenal in the 54th minute, yet the Norwegian went from hero to villain 14 minutes later, bringing down Fred in the box.
Atkinson seemed inclined to let it pass, but VAR intervened and United got the penalty.
The 36-year-old Ronaldo stepped to the spot and beat Ramsdale with a perfect strike, another milestone for the Portuguese striker.