If Mikel Arteta is right, and Arsenal could not afford to slip up here in their pursuit of the European spots, then this was a devastating blow. They had taken the lead through a marvellous goal from Nicolas Pépé midway through the second half and, with plenty of other chances having come and gone, there should have been little cause to expect what followed. But an impressively durable Brighton equalised through Lewis Dunk and then, in a development that will sicken Arsenal for two reasons, Neal Maupay floated in a superb winner with the final action of the game.

Maupay had already been central to the game’s abiding image, which was formed minutes before half-time when Bernd Leno, attending to a bouncing ball on the right side of his area, claimed it ahead of the striker. Leno had been comfortable favourite to win that battle, both through proximity and an extra seven inches in height.

Related: Brighton 2-1 Arsenal: Premier League – as it happened

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