August 8, 2022

‘I love Luke Ayling as a player, but what an idiot’

Jamie Carragher has criticised Luke Ayling after the Leeds United man was sent off against Arsenal for a rash challenge in the first half at the Emirates.

Mikel Arteta’s side hosted relegation-threatened Leeds in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon, knowing that a win would increase their lead over north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur to four points.

Nightmare starts for Leeds

Leeds endured a nightmare start to the match, with goalkeeper Illan Meslier gifting the Gunners an early goal after the shot-stopper failed to clear the ball in time and smashed his kick straight into former United loanee Eddie Nketiah, who was able to deflect it into the goal.

Nketiah grabbed his second of the match just five minutes later before the away side were reduced to 10-men after Leeds defender Ayling was sent off for a rash tackle on Gabriel Martinelli.

Ayling was initially shown a yellow card, but after a VAR review, referee Chris Kavanagh upgraded his punishment from yellow to red.

Speaking on Sky Sports at half-time, Liverpool legend Carragher slammed Ayling for his ‘disgusting’ challenge, suggesting that he let his teammates down.

“I love Luke Ayling as a player, but what an idiot. The lack of professionalism for his own teammates and what this could mean going forward, it’s not just down to 10-men,” said Carragher.

“Disgusting tackle coming in two feet there. What he think is going to happen on the back off that, it was obviously going to be a red card.

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“To do that, put your teammates down to 10-men, you miss the last three games of the season. That could be the last game Luke Ayling ever plays in the Premier League.”

Ayling was making his 500th career appearance at the Emirates on Sunday.

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