Queen Elizabeth II: How Former Arsenal Star Emmanuel Eboue Made Her Majesty Laugh at Buckingham Palace

Queen Elizabeth II: How Former Arsenal Star Emmanuel Eboue Made Her Majesty Laugh at Buckingham Palace

Martin Moses
updated at April 12, 2023 at 8:11 PM
  • Emmanuel Eboue once had Queen Elizabeth II laughing when she asked her if he could quit football to work for her
  • The Ivorian star wanted to take care of the dogs that the Queen kept at the Buckingham Palace
  • He was part of the Arsenal squad that was treated to an afternoon tea by the Queen in 2007

It was a poorly kept secret that Queen Elizabeth II had a soft spot for Premier League side Arsenal. Whether she actually supported them will never be known as there were other rumours of her being a West Ham United supporter.

The Queen passed on on September 8th, 2022, at the Balmoral Castle, marking the end of the longest-serving Monarchs in history.

Emmanuel Eboue, Thierry Henry, Buckingham Palace, Arsenal, Queen Elizabeth II
Thierry Henry introduces his teammates to Queen Elizabeth II during Arsenal's visit to Buckingham Palace in 2007. Photo by Fiona Hanson.
Source: Getty Images

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Queen Elizabeth has been eulogized as a true trailblazer of what the democracy of the United Kingdom embodies. Former player turned pundit Garry Lineker hailed her as a remarkable woman.

Apart from her political and royal duties, the Queen also set time aside to get involved in other activities like sports. She was at hand to present England's World Cup trophy in 1966. She similarly hosted Arsenal at Buckingham Palace in 2007.

During this visit, Emmanuel Eboue, a former Arsenal midfielder, made the Queen laugh when he asked her if he could quit his job as a professional footballer to take care of the Queen's dogs.

Eboue, as quoted by The Telegraph, recounted how the conversation went.

We went there and Thierry Henry said to me: ‘Please, Emmanuel, this is Buckingham Palace, it’s the Queen’s house, don’t do anything.’
'No problem,’ I said. ‘Don’t worry.’
So, the Queen came in and went along shaking each player’s hand. After she’d finished, I saw all her corgis, so I said, ‘Ma’am, Ma'am.'
She turned back and asked, ‘How are you?’ and I said, ‘Ma’am, I am OK, thank you, but please, I don’t want to be a footballer anymore, I want to look after your dogs. I want to take them for walks, wash them and feed them. I want to be a dog carer.'
The Queen, honestly, was laughing. Prince Philip was laughing too. All the team was laughing.

Corgis are dogs that originated from Pembrokeshire, Wales. The Queen was a confirmed lover of dogs and it is believed she kept at least four.

Queen Elizabeth II was a rumoured Arsenal fan

Sports Brief had earlier reported that Queen Elizabeth's passing has rekindled fond memories that she shared with Premier League giants Arsenal FC.

It was widely believed that Her Royalty was an Arsenal fan. There were also rumours of her having a soft spot for another London team, West Ham United.

Like other Royalties, the Queen never revealed her true team. She, however, hosted Arsenal at Buckingham Palace in 2007.

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Martin Moses
Martin Moses is a sports journalist with over five years of experience in media. He graduated from Multimedia University of Kenya (Bachelor of Journalism, 2017-2021)