Calum Chambers will face the club that he joined at just seven years of age this Sunday, when Southampton travel to the Emirates for our Premier League clash.
The 23-year-old made the switch to north London back in the summer of 2014, but despite all the attention and coverage that comes with the transfer window, Chambers’ move remained a secret throughout.
“It was funny because nobody knew about me moving to Arsenal,” Chambers told Arsenal.com. “We literally didn’t tell anyone, not even my flatmate at Southampton knew.
“I’ve turned up here, all dressed up in my shirt and my jeans, stood outside the office at the training ground and Chambo walks around the corner. He had to double-take! It was brilliant because he just couldn’t believe it.
“Then obviously I’ve had to call up my flatmate and say, ‘Can you give my boots to the kitman? I need my boots’. Then I had to go back, I took my Sky box with me and all that. It was quite a surprise to everyone.”
Chambers burst onto the scene at Southampton at just 17, but before he was a fully-fledged Premier League defender, he admired a former Gunner who was still plying his trade at Southampton.
“My relationship with Chambo is quite funny. He broke through into the first team and obviously I was a couple of years younger than him, so we sort of looked up to him. Our age group thought, ‘He can do it, so one of us could do it’.
“In my first training session I trained with him and then we started getting the train in together. Me and Harrison Reed, who lived at my house, used to get the train in from Petersfield to Southampton, and he and Lloyd Isgrove would get on the train halfway. We’d get train journeys in every day together but he was always the first-team player at the time so we had massive respect for him.
“I remember the first day seeing him [at Arsenal] where I turned up and he didn’t have a clue. I stood in the corridor and he just saw me and was so surprised, it was brilliant. I can remember his face and it was so funny. It’s been quite interesting how our paths have crossed throughout our careers.”
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