Arsenal keeper Bernd Leno (center) was not happy with Brighton’s Neal Maupay (7). (Mike Hewitt/Pool via REUTERS)
Neal Maupay is a very popular man around Brighton & Hove Albion right now. Not so much around Arsenal.
The French striker finished from a tight angle in the fifth minute of stoppage time to beat Arsenal 2-1 on Saturday. Maupay was also involved in an incident that forced Gunners keeper Bernd Leno to be stretchered off the pitch, and afterward, he had a pointed message for Leno’s teammates:
Maupay did apologize repeatedly, but here’s the last bit of that again:
“I’ve been through a bad injury, so I know it’s hard. But I never meant to hurt him. But some of the Arsenal players need to learn humility … They’d been talking a lot first half, second half when they were 1-nil up. They got what they deserved.”
The incident in question occurred in the 36th minute when Leno ran out to the corner of his box to grab a bouncing ball. Maupay jumped into him with his challenge, which itself is not egregious; attacking players make contact with keepers like that all the time. (Whether or not it should be legislated out of the game is a different story.)
But Leno landed awkwardly and was left fuming. You can watch the entire sequence unfold starting around the 3:15 mark:
Apparently, Arsenal’s players tore into Maupay over it the rest of the game. Maupay struck back with his late winner, which started with a nice dummy run that let the ball roll to Aaron Connolly, who played a first-time dink into the penalty area:
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta admitted he wasn’t sure Maupay was at fault for Leno’s injury after the match. But the injury problems at the Emirates are deepening after Arsenal lost two more players midweek and have several regulars out already.
So we put the question to you.
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