Don’t blame Gallas — he was trying to do a captain’s job

November 24, 2008

“There’s a lot of cover-ups sometimes and players need to stand up and be counted. I’m not sure that happens a lot at this club.” — Roy Keane, May 7, 2002.

“When you play for Manchester United nothing should interfere with what you are doing during the week and during a match. I have felt that one or two of the younger players have slackened off in training. I have not been happy about it. I have said it to them but maybe I have had to say it in public for them to sit up and take notice.” — Roy Keane, Feb 19, 2004.

And he did it again in 2005.

So what’s new about William Gallas revealing ‘secrets’ from Arsenal’s dressing room? Nothing. And what’s so terrible about a captain hitting out at his team mates when they fail to deliver?

Gallas was doing the job of a captain at a club without a trophy since 2005.

Alright, Gallas is no Keano, but we cannot blame him for trying.

After all, it can get a lot worse in Germany. I remember in 1999 Bixente Lizarazu reportedly slapping Lothar Matthaeus in the face during a training session at Bayern Munich.

Perhaps some people will see a pattern emerging, and seek to blame the French, but then you may also remember the Italian Giovanni Trapattoni criticising players by name.

PHOTO: William Gallas trains with Arsenal, November 24, 2008. REUTERS/ Eddie Keogh

11 comments

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[...] should interfere with what you are doing during the week and during a match. I have felt that [...] Go to Source Last 5 posts in Premier LeagueShould Arsenal give Gallas the boot? – November 22nd, 2008Another [...]

I just saw something on the internet saying Keane had come out in support of Gallas, saying he has the right to criticise the players in public… will try to find a link.

Posted by Kevin Fylan | Report as abusive

Wenger has been quoted as telling the Daily Mail: “I don’t believe too much in leadership. I believe more in good passing than a guy who jumps around with his hands in the air and plays the leader”.
Strange quotes that most Arsenal fans would find a bit unpalatable.
Gallas has probably gone a bit too far given that he hasnt been at Arsenal for most of his career like Keane did. I’m not sure belittling young players works but the softly softly approach isnt working either…

Posted by Mark | Report as abusive

“Gallas is no Keano”.

Says it all really.

Posted by Hans Moman | Report as abusive

Gallas should have complained to the coach, not blabbed to the French press. If he was unhappy with the response he got from the coach he should have quit as captain. These rules apply in every sport (and in fact in every walk of life). If Keane said otherwise he’s a fool.

Posted by Matthew | Report as abusive

good point, Matthew, but: Gallas did not blab to the French press, but the AP and afterall, isn’t it all Wenger’s responsibility ?

Posted by Julien | Report as abusive

maybe french players think they are a cut above the rest.i dont think so, are gael friends lol need to take a lesson in putting their index finger to their lips after all platini with his controversy, cantona with his outbursts, and now gallas opening the can of worms learn to take a rear seat in the operation lads.

Posted by Steven bowell | Report as abusive

I think we all know that Gallas wanted the publicity to help promote his book. It wasn’t the smartest thing to go public, but I agree that it’s not a big deal.

I think the more pressing subject is why footballers and managers are suddenly giving hints? Gallas talked about “a teammate, six years younger than him”" then Joe Kinnear talked about a “player at Roma who hasn’t seen much playing time” and “someone who has already scored against us this season” on his target list. It’s like you have to be Columbo to read the football gossip these days…

well the latest is that Gallas has been permanently stripped of the captaincy with Fabregas taking over. However Gallas is set to play against Kiev. http://uk.reuters.com/article/sportsNews  /idUKTRE4AN3HB20081124

Posted by Mark | Report as abusive

My real issue with Gallas is not about his comments, calling out the squad’s commitment, rather it is the fashion in which he said them. Gallas goes away on an international break, then decides to spew his mouth about a lack of commitment, also calling out individual players. If Gallas was at an Arsenal press conference, and called out teammates without naming names, then I’ve got no problem, rather I would laud him for challenging his teammates in times of crisis. Furter, it’s apparrent that Gallas ran his mouth in order to promote his upcoming release of his French-language biography.

An unspoken rule in the dressing room is that conflicts stay within the dressing room, and are subsequently sorted in the dresser. Gallas did neither of these. Fabregas must be captain, and Gallas must be dropped and sold in January, even if we can’t get more than a pound for him. Personally, I wouldn’t be able to trust Gallas as a teammate if he has slammed me in public, calling me out as an individual.

Posted by Steve | Report as abusive

[...] blame Gallas — he was trying to do a captain’s job Full Article “There’s a lot of cover-ups sometimes and players need to stand up and be counted. I’m not [...]

He should do his job as a captin and tell that at changing room not in front of the media

I think there is a difference between what Keane and Gallas did. Keane said nothing about what went on in the dressing room, which is something that is considered to be especially private, whereas Gallas did. Keane was also less inclined to be so specific about blaming individual players, again there is a difference between saying “one or two players have slackened off in training” and saying, as Gallas did, “people come up to me on the pitch and complain about a player…six years younger than me”. Doing a captain’s job is to either encourage or criticise the team as a whole, without revealing private details of goings on in the team dressing room, or directing criticism at an individual player. You would never find Keane sulking on the centre circle after the award of a last minute penalty against his side. On the contrary, Keane would have been the first to charge towards the goal ater the penalty was taken, determined to be the first to clear the ball should it be saved or hit a post, to recify the injustice. Whatever Gallas was doing, just as against Birmingham, it was not a captain’s job.

Posted by Lozza | Report as abusive