Neal Maupay claimed Arsenal "got what they deserved" after he struck the winner deep into stoppage time having earlier clashed with Gunners goalkeeper Bernd Leno.
The Brighton and Hove Albion forward proved a controversial hero for the hosts, who secured a vital 2-1 victory at the Amex Stadium to move five points clear of the Premier League relegation zone on Sunday (AEST).
Maupay was involved in a grim first-half incident, where a coming together with Leno ended with the German suffering a nasty-looking knee injury.
Arsenal, beaten 3-0 by Manchester City on Thursday, appeared set to shrug that off when Nicolas Pepe scored a fine goal in the 68th minute.
But Lewis Dunk levelled soon after and Maupay had the final say in the 95th minute, which he felt was fitting against a side he claims lack humility, though he wished Leno a swift recovery and insisted malice played no part in the challenge.
"At half-time I went to the manager Mikel Arteta to apologise," Maupay told BT Sport.
"I never meant to injure the keeper. I jumped for the ball. I apologise to the team and to him as well. I have been through a bad injury, it is hard.
"Arsenal players maybe need to learn humility sometimes. They were talking a lot. They got what they deserved.
"I just went to get the ball really. When he landed he twisted his knee. It is football, there is contact. I never meant to hurt him. I apologise again and wish him a speedy recovery."
The result has afforded Graham Potter's side some breathing space, but Maupay knows there is plenty of work still to come.
"It is just a win, we have eight games to go – some very big games," he added.
"Anything can happen and we need to stay focused. It is a good start, we are really happy but we need to get straight back in tomorrow to focus on the next game."