By Richard Clarke

Kolo Toure was surprised at the reaction of certain sections of the Arsenal crowd to Emmanuel Eboue’s substitution on Saturday.

The midfielder, a 32nd-minute replacement for Samir Nasri, made a couple of mistakes late in a tight, tense game against Wigan on Saturday and, as a result, was brought off for Mikael Silvestre. Some supporters cheered Arsène Wenger’s decision but Toure felt that was uncalled for, unusual and unfair.

“Eboue had an injury for six weeks and this was his first game,” said the centre back.

“We had some injuries and that is why the boss put him on and he played well.

“At the end he had a difficult time but we need to give him credit because he was not 100 per cent however he had to play because of our injuries and he did well.

“The fans gave him a hard time and that is unusual at Arsenal. I was surprised because normally our fans are [always] nice. I think the tension was really high and that is why they were hard. In the end we had three points and that is good. He will have a chat with the boss and I think he will come back.

“We need him and he is a strong boy. I’ll call him, he will also have a chat with the manager on Monday and then he will be fine.

“I just want to tell the fans that he is a great lad, he loves the Club and wants to do his best for the Club. Sometimes, when you come back from a six-week injury you cannot give 200 per cent. We hope that next time they will help him to come back. That is the only way to behave.”

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8 Dec 2008