CONFIRMED: Mata goal v Shrewsbury should not have stood

Man United deployed a three-man wall in front of the League One side's goalkeeper and the Premier League have confirmed the assistant referee should have flagged for offside
Juan Mata’s controversial goal against Shrewsbury during Monday’s FA Cup fifth round tie should not have stood, the Premier League has confirmed.

The Spaniard’s 45th minute free-kick put his side 2-0 up and all but booked Louis Van Gaal’s men a place in the quarter final against West Ham.

But the goal and, more specifically, the deployment of a three-man wall comprised of Anthony Martial, Jesse Lingard and Daley Blind in front of Shrewsbury goalkeeper Jayson Leutwiler, caused controversy and confusion in equal measure.

As a result the Premier League has written to clubs this week in order to clarify that the tactics used by United should have resulted in Mata’s goal being chalked off.

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A statement read: “The Premier League has this week written to its clubs to provide guidance regarding the offside law. The guidance is in relation to players standing in an offside position when a free-kick is taken.

“Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) issued this guidance to clear up misunderstandings that arose following the goal awarded to Manchester United in their FA Cup fifth-round tie against Shrewsbury Town on Monday night.

“PGMOL consulted the International Football Association Board (IFAB) as to whether there was an offside offence or not. As a result the PGMOL guidance below clarifies the situation.

“For the avoidance of doubt, similar scenarios in the future will be expected to be given as offside.”