William Gallas claims that he was surprised when Arsenal supporters applauded him rather than booed him on his debut for the Gunners against Middlesbrough.

After spending five years at Chelsea before signing for Arsenal in part of a swap deal for Ashley Cole, Gallas was convinced that Gooners would boo him. Therefore, the centre-back, who would later become Arsenal captain, admits that he was surprised when they applauded him as he warmed up for his debut against Middlesbrough.

“I would say that my best memory at Arsenal is actually my first game against Middlesbrough,” Gallas told FourFourTwo [via the Mirror].

“Because I’d arrived from Chelsea, the supporters would normally boo you.

“But when I was out on the pitch during the warm-up, they all applauded me. That was really nice – I did not expect that.”

Gallas signed for Arsenal from Chelsea in 2006 and was instantly given the #10 shirt because he found the #3 ‘uncomfortable’.


He made his debut against Boro on 9 September and scored his first goal later that month against Sheffield United.

Four years and over 100 Premier League appearances later, Gallas signed for Tottenham.

THEN he got booed.

It’s slightly odd that he was surprised that Gooners didn’t boo him when he signed for the club. They usually boo when players LEAVE for rivals clubs (good luck for December, Ox), not when they sign for Arsenal. Perhaps he thought the residual frustration over Cashley leaving would influence the fans’ opinion of him.

The former France international moved from Spurs to Perth Glory in 2013, where he made 15 appearances and was released a year later.

The 40-year-old has now retired.