On this day in 1990: Arsenal and Manchester United punished over 21-man brawl

On this day in 1990: Arsenal and Manchester United punished over 21-man brawl

The game became known as the ‘Battle of Old Trafford’. On this day in 1990, Arsenal and Manchester United heavily fined. And deducted points following a mass brawl between two teams the previous month.

A Football Association disciplinary commission decided to fine both clubs £50,000 each as punishment for the fight involving 21 players at Old Trafford on October 20. In addition to the fine, two league points were deducted from the Gunners and one from United.

Midway through the second half, fighting broke out after Nigel Winterburn made a lunging tackle on United full-back Denis Irwin.


Brian McClair and Irwin retaliated against Winterburn and Anders Limpar, whose goal earlier in the game saw Arsenal win the match 1-0, with Paul Ince also heavily involved.

All 11 United players and 10 Gunners players on the pitch took part in the melee, with visiting goalkeeper David Seaman the only one not involved.

Incredibly, no-one sent off, with referee Keith Hackett only showing yellow cards to Limpar and Winterburn for their involvement.

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