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Brighton boss Graham Potter’s swipe at Manchester United players after Lewis Dunk’s controversial red card

Dunk was sent off after a VAR review for his tackle on United’s Anthony Elanga.

Manchester United moved back up to fourth in the Premier League after their 2-0 win over Brighton & Hove Albion on Tuesday evening.

A wonder-strike from Cristiano Ronaldo ended the United No.7’s longest goal drought since 2009, before Bruno Fernandes fired home the club’s second goal of the game in the 97th minute.

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However, there was some controversy during the second-half with Brighton defender Lewis Dunk being sent off for a foul on Anthony Elanga, despite initially being shown a yellow card by referee Peter Bankes.

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring for Manchester United. Credit: Getty.

The Red Devils players swarmed Bankes after his initial decision, leading to Fernandes receiving a yellow card of his own and Jarred Gillett, who was in charge of VAR, to advise the former to review his decision on the pitchside monitor.

Seagulls’ manager Graham Potter believes the controversial sending off was instigated by United’s players crowding Bankes, despite fellow Brighton defender Adam Webster ‘on the cover’.

"It was a yellow card live, Webster was there on the cover. It is not clear and obvious. I don’t understand the intervention," Potter said.

Asked about the pressure from the Red Devils’ players on Bankes, Potter said: "Asking the question, you are answering the question. I don’t blame them, I am not being critical, it is what it is.

"They have to do their bit for the team - but you need the referee and VAR to make the calls independently."

United have been criticised for ‘bottling’ their last three games after taking a 1-0 lead against Southampton, Burnley and Middlesbrough, but held out on Tuesday.

Though on the receiving end of defeat, Potter emphasised he was ‘happy’ with the Seagulls’ performance and looked for his side to ‘hang on’ once Dunk was dismissed.

Fernandes celebrate scoring against Brighton. Credit: Getty.

“I thought we were the better team in the first half, I was really happy with our performance, the attacks Man United had were from our giveaways but it’s not easy here to control their transitions, they attack big spaces really well," said Potter.

"We don’t start the second half well enough, we got punished with a world-class finish from a world-class player, then a controversial red card and it was about us trying to hang on, we rode our luck in that period.

"We gave ourselves a chance, Jakub [Moder] hit the bar and Danny [Welbeck] had that header. I’m proud of the performance."