Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi has reportedly taunted Brighton players during the Gunners’ latest defeat at the Amex Stadium on Saturday.
Guendouzi, who escaped an FA ban for grabbing Neal Maupay following his compatriot last-minute winner for Brighton allegedly made tasteless insults to Brighton players.
The French man was seen tussling with striker Maupay after the final whistle of Arsenal’s 2-1 defeat, an incident that sparked a mass confrontation between the teams.
It was confirmed yesterday that the 21-year-old French midfielder will not face a violent conduct charge by the FA.
Arsenal players were furious with Maupay following his tackle on Bernd Leno which left the goalkeeper injured and may be out of action for a year.
Maupay said after the match that Guendouzi should be called to order by senior figures at Arsenal following the incident, saying the player lacked humility.
Sources claim Guendouzi, who earns in the region of £40,000-a-week, spent the game taunting Brighton players about the financial disparity between the squads.
Brighton’s top earners are somewhere in the region of £50,000-a-week, while Arsenal’s top earner Mesut Ozil earns £350,000-a-week.
In the post-match interview, Maupay accused Arsenal players of arrogance following the win, with his remarks primarily aimed at Guendouzi.
It is also claimed that Guendouzi blamed Maupay for the injury suffered by Leno, and was generally disparaging about the quality of players in the Brighton team.
“He was saying the Brighton players were s*** and that he and his team-mates earn so much more than they ever will,’ a source said. “He’s done it in other games as well. Arsenal are a decent club and hate that sort of behaviour.”
According to talkSPORT, former Arsenal midfielder Perry Groves has urged manager Mikel Arteta to ensure Guendouzi falls into line.
“I’ve heard a few things about Guendouzi’s attitude. You want your players to be confident and a bit arrogant on the pitch but he’s not good enough to go around giving people verbals.
“If Maupay’s been getting it in the ear all game from Guendouzi and he then goes and scores the winner, he is right to say, “What have you got to say now?
“Someone, whether it’s Arteta, the coaching staff or the senior players, needs to tell Guendouzi to wind his neck in.”
Arsenal have refused to comment on the issue but will continue to assess Leno amid fears he could miss the rest of the season with damaged knee ligaments, starting with Thursday’s trip to Southampton.
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