Conor Gallagher has apologized to Crystal Palace fans after scoring two goals against his former club in Chelsea’s crucial win.
The midfielder scored his second and third goals of the season as the Blues came from behind to win 3-1 at Selhurst Park.
Gallagher spent the 2021/22 season on loan at Palace and was a huge hit among their fans as he scored eight goals and assisted five others in all competitions.
However, he didn’t shy away from celebrating for Chelsea on Monday night, with the 24-year-old scoring the winner for the south London side for the second season in a row.
Sky Sports presenter David Jones said after the match that the Palace fans thought he loved them, but he kept coming back to score at their expense.
And with a big smile on his face, Gallagher admitted: “I love them, that’s the problem. It’s sad but you can’t beat that feeling, so I’m sorry, Palace fans.”
His first goal of the match came in the 47th minute and the crucial second was scored in stoppage time, with the midfielder shouting and running outwards each time.
Despite showing his passion for the club he has played for since the age of eight, a talkSPORT caller questioned the level of his celebrations.
Calling into the Sports Bar, Shaun said: “When Gallagher scored I just didn’t like his celebration, it was too early in the game. If you score in the last minute… if he scored his second goal first, I would. understand, 90th minute, you have the winner, you run into the crowd.
“But it was like the 60th minute and I thought, ‘The Palace fans loved him when he was here for the season.’ And I was thinking how much it means to Palace fans not to see a player celebrating.”
Palace fan Jermaine also said: “[Malo] Gusto was rampant throughout the game and he caught us at the break and Gallagher came on and scored his first goal, it’s a shame he had to really celebrate because he was well loved by the fans at Palace.
Gallagher has now scored three goals in his last two appearances for Chelsea, having gone 34 matches without scoring.
The Blues fell behind on the night in a poor first half as Jefferson Lerma produced an excellent strike from distance for Palace.
Roy Hodgson’s side were caught napping early in the second half, however, with Gallagher firing in a half-volley from a Gusto cross.
He then struck low into the bottom corner at the start of injury time to complete the comeback, with Enzo Fernandez also scoring moments later to seal all three points for Chelsea.