In a result which both Arsenal and Chelsea will celebrate, the gunners downed Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium to blow the English Premier League title race wide open.

After a goalless first half, dominated by Arsenal, the Gunners scored the crucial goal shortly into the second period. With 56 minutes on the clock, Van Persie did well to break down the right and stay composed in the box before picking out the late arriving Aaron Ramsey, who started instead of the injured Fabregas, to strike calmly from 12 yards.

It eventually proved to be the difference between the two sides. Manchester United proded forward in pursuit of the equalizer and had a late penalty appeal denied when Michael Owen was brought down by Clichy, just inside the box. Though it seemed as though there was minimal contact, replays showed Clichy sticking a leg out to bring him down. However,not many United fans can complain as earlier in the first half, Vidic deliberately handled the ball, deflecting a cross away from Van Persie in the box. The referee and the assistant missed that incident and Arsenal appeals were denied.

The loss means Manchester United have just a three point lead at the top of the table and with second placed Chelsea visiting Old Trafford next week, the title play-off becomes a crunch encounter. It's a little too late for Arsenal, but they'll look at this win as something to celebrate in a season which promised a lot but failed to transpire.