Aaron Ramsdale appeared to laugh on the substitutes bench moments after Arsenal’s first choice goalkeeper David Raya made a howler against Luton.
Raya, who joined on loan from Brentford last summer, has established himself as Mikel Arteta’s preferred choice between the sticks at the Emirates, despite making a handful of significant errors since being given the vote of confidence.
Ramsdale, who played all 38 league matches during Arsenal’s title pursuit last season, has since dropped to the bench to make way for the Spaniard.
The goalkeeper’s father criticised Arteta’s handling of the situation last month, saying ‘my son has lost his smile’.
But the English shot-stopper appeared in jovial spirits on the Arsenal bench on Monday night, as the Gunners carved out a late 4-3 victory at Kenilworth Road thanks to a stoppage time winner from summer signing Declan Rice.
David Raya made two huge errors on Tuesday, first flapping at a cross for Luton’s second goal
Raya later made another blunder as he failed to deal with Ross Barkley’s third goal for Luton
Shortly after Raya’s first significant mistake, TV cameras caught Arsenal’s back-up goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale (above) smiling before he quickly switched to a sheepish expression
Amazon Prime’s TV cameras panned to Ramsdale on the Arsenal bench moments after Raya made his first significant error of the match. Fans noticed the 25-year-old star crack a smile before appearing to switch to a sheepish expression when realising the cameras were on him.
There is, of course, no evidence suggesting that Ramsdale was actually laughing at Raya or his mistake.
Raya’s performance came under major scrutiny on Tuesday after he flapped at Alfie Doughty’s corner and allowed Elija Adebayo to score an equaliser at 2-2.
The goalkeeper then failed to stop a strike from Ross Barkley, allowing the ball to go underneath him for Luton’s 3-2 lead.
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Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta refused to blame his new No 1 goalkeeper for the mistakes
After the match, Arteta was asked about the two mistakes by a reporter, who said: ‘There is a lot of talk about the goalkeeper situation at the moment. Is it fair to say two of goals were gifted to Luton?’
But Arteta flatly deflected away from the response, before delivering a frosty response, replying: ‘I am so happy with the team.’
Arsenal pushed their lead at the top of the Premier League to five points ahead of Liverpool’s away clash with Sheffield United on Wednesday.
The Gunners travel to Villa Park on Saturday to take on in-form Aston Villa, who sit fourth in the Premier League ahead of Wednesday’s game against champions Manchester City.