Ilkay Gundogan received a generally positive reaction but was booed by a 'small minority' of German fans in Thursday's 0-0 draw against France in Munich.
Gundogan was a second half substitute at the Allianz Arena, replacing Leon Goretzka in the 66th minute of Germany's first match since their humiliating World Cup group stage exit.
It was also Germany's first game since the international retirement of Mesut Ozil, who cited 'racism and disrespect' as his reasons for stepping down from the national team.
To be clear, it was a small minority that booed Gundogan. Many others applauded. But when the mood of the night was very much about getting behind the team, putting the World Cup in the past, that left a very sour note— Oliver Kay (@OliverKayTimes) September 6, 2018
Ozil and Gundogan, both of Turkish descent, were photographed with Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in London in May. The photo was hugely controversial and led to a backlash from the German public, media, and senior figures in the German Football Association.
Ozil bore the brunt of the criticism and felt unable to keep playing for Germany, while Gundogan chose to continue with Die Mannschaft despite sympathising with Ozil's plight.
Oliver Kay, journalist for the Times, claimed on Twitter that a 'small minority' of German fans had booed Gundogan while 'many applauded'. He said that the jeers left a 'sour note' on a night when the Germany team was trying to move on from recent troubles.
Before the match, Germany manager Joachim Low had pre-emptively stated his irritation with fans who might give Gundogan a negative reception.
"First of all, having a national player booed like that helps nobody. I ask you this - what should Ilkay do now?" said Low, quoted by the Mirror.
"He took a picture, yes, but he made no political statement. He spoke about this with the press last week and underlined his support for German values. Everybody must move on from this now."
Germany face Peru in a friendly match on Sunday.