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Roy Keane Sadly Doesn’t Know The Rules… Shhhh

Having spent most of his United career as Sir Alex Ferguson’s right-hand man, when Keane approached the end of his career he mistakenly thought that his worth to the manager was as great as when he was at the peak of his career. Keane learnt the hard way how cut-throat football, and Ferguson to a certain extent, can be. After repeatedly coming to blows with Carlos Queiroz, Keane was told he was no longer needed by the club, when he had probably expected the manager to take his side. Queiroz still had lots to offer United though, as he proved when helping steer us to European glory in 2008, whilst Keane’s influence was on the wane.

It is totally understandable that this situation hurt Keane and left him feeling fairly bitter towards the manager. The club threatened him with legal action after he criticised the way the club handled his exit, leading Keane to decline the invitation to attend Ferguson’s 25th anniversary meal and, more recently, the statue unveiling.

Keane has repeatedly insisted that he holds no bitterness towards United, despite a break down in the relationship with his former boss, and that all his family are still United fans.

“I count my blessings to have played for Manchester United,” he said in 2011. “All my family are United fans and I don’t have any bitterness towards Man United, please let’s make that clear.”

However, whilst Keane might not have any bitterness towards United, whose fans still sing his name on a regular basis, it’s clearly hard for him to separate having a pop at the club with having a pop at Ferguson.

After Nani was ridiculously sent off last night, Keane went on a rant about how Nani was at fault and deserved the red card, whilst also getting in a few digs about the Portuguese winger being a bit of a soft lad.

“I think the referee has actually made the right call,” Keane said after the game. “Everyone’s upset about it and it’s slightly unlucky, but it’s dangerous play. Whether he meant it or not is irrelevant. It’s dangerous play – it’s a red card. Whether he meant it or not doesn’t matter.”

If Keane seriously felt as though that challenge/attempt to control the ball was a straight red, it makes you wonder how he sees his own career. It’s quite incredible that he managed to make it through 90 minutes on a weekly basis.

Paddy Crerand has reacted furiously to Keane’s stance on the issue and has resorted to taking a pop at him for missing the European Cup final in 1999.

“Roy Keane was in a minority of one,” Crerand said. “Nobody else thinks it was a sending off apart from him. Does Keane want to be noticed? Or is he envious or jealous? Has he got the needle with Manchester United because of what happened to him here? Why are we talking about Roy Keane? What about the other 99.9 per cent of people who said it wasn’t as sending off? Let me tell you… I played for Manchester United. I played in a European Cup final. Roy didn’t.”

Everyone is entitled to an opinion. Everyone has their idea of what a red card challenge looks like. Whilst it may be Keane’s opinion that Nani should have been sent off, the Laws of the game say otherwise.

FIFA Law 12: If a player plays in a dangerous manner in a “normal” challenge, the referee should not take any disciplinary action. If the action is made with obvious risk of injury the referee should caution the player.

Keane is getting paid a lot of money to be a pundit, after his failed managerial career, so it shouldn’t be too much to ask that he actually knows the rules of the game before he gives his opinion, should it?

Keane is a United legend, a truly inspirational captain, and a player who we still haven’t managed to replace in the eight years since he left, but it’s sad to see him make a fool out of himself. If he wants to have a pop at Ferguson, meet him after the game and have a laugh at the decision. To go on national television and spout a load of nonsense, that contradicts what the Laws of the game actually say, should be beneath him. Sort it out, Roy.

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. redrory says:

    He has a different opinion and all the years as a player is forgotten? Just like that. Leeds ’96, Turin ’99, Highbury ’00 and ’05 and all the other ncredible performances, too many to remember, nevermind name, so routine were they. Theres a difference between being wrong(like he is) and a ”cunt” or ”bitter”, ”disgrace” or whatever else u stupid ungrateful twats said. Grow the fuck up

    P.S. Much as i love Paddy he was bang out of order with what he said, anyone with half a brain knows we would never have got to Barcelona in ’99 without Keane.

  2. 16 says:

    I still think he was the best midfielder we ever had ! He used to be my idol as my username proves but now it’s becoming obvious how bitter he is towards the club. Fokkin sort it out Keano you muppet!

  3. kel says:

    I actually not bother by what ex player say because i just focus on our team and present team.

    Why bother about them when they are not relevant to us now?

    Nani red card is harsh but not a red card. Yellow at best. There is no attempt to injured a player and no forceful/agressive touch whatsoever. Arbaloa make the most of it by rolling on the ground like a child.

  4. reddy says:

    Personally I don’t think it is any bitterness…But the more I see his behaviour and statements, I think it is case of taking his own hard man image and UN-sentimentality too seriously. He does overcompensate by quite a bit though…

  5. Bobby Charlton's combover says:

    Keane walks into a pub ‘pint of bitter please’
    Barman ‘ don’t you think you’ve had enough Roy?’

  6. g-man says:

    You could see Keano leading the IRA in another life couldn’t you. A great player, a great competitor, but a total psycho and bitter as they come.

  7. NC says:

    Paddy Crerand is the one who sounds bitter here, not Roy Keane.

  8. Bobby Charlton's combover says:

    Paddy knows when to call a spade a spade and he defends his club with great pride.
    His defence of Rio’s celebration is the stuff of legend.

    I’ve defended Keane foe years but now it’s just bitterness and controversy for the sake of it.
    He’s torn chapters out of Eamon Dunphy’s book and is grooming the Keane brand, the anger, the bitterness, the misunderstood genuis, the man who thinks he’s not just bigger than United but he’s bigger than football. It’s very tiring and when fans who idolised him like many on here are now telling him to grow up or fuck off then you know he’s out of line.

  9. power2havenots says:

    Roy loves to draw attention to himself (just like that other media whore Mourinho!). There is no doubt about it. He always makes comments like these about Ireland as well. He enjoys playing devils advocate and especially loves to smack down anyone who uses “bad luck” as an excuse for not achieving success (scouse mentality). He was right about EPL not being anywhere near the best in the world – CR7 took it WAY too easy on us! His issue is with Ferguson. Keane is a control freak and holds loyalty above all else (just like ferguson). His hurt at being thrown to the side by a manager who told him he was supremely important every day is still unresolved, and so he loves to lash out at fergie when he can (showing his hurt and making his attempts to hide it with emotionless comments embarrassing). Nani’s control of the ball was reckless and dangerous but not excessive so a yellow for me. As a team we lost our focus and imploded – theres no excuse for that! As a fan you aren’t paid (generously) to control your emotions but as a professional at the top of your game you are. If utd are going to the dogs every time a decision is taken which they dont like, as professionals they need to sort that out!

  10. journeyman73 says:

    During his post match review Keano, said “after the game he was sent off in, he would ask himself if he gave the ref the opportunity to send him off”, the answer was normally yes cause the blokes leg was in half!

    Great player
    Crap Manager – would struggle on football manager
    and rubbish pundit, who is only there for the sound bites

  11. mara says:

    We had a judge wich was in comision in judge organization and he says it is a red card, because Nani saw a player. Maybe he is God so he know 100% who sees what.

  12. deevor says:

    Your Fifa Law 12 schtick doesnt hold up, because kicking someone in the chest/at that height is not a “normal” challenge.

  13. Scott says:

    deevor – You are right, it was not a “normal” challenge, it was an action which was made with obvious risk of injury, because of the height of Nani’s foot, which means the referee should caution the player. Reading not your strong point?

  14. Millhouse says:

    Scott, I am not arguing that it is or is not serious foul play. I am merely pointing out that both Keane and the author of this article are both using the wrong part of the Laws to begin with. This isn’t “dangerous play”. The referee did not show a red for “dangerous play”. He showed a red for “serious foul play”.

    Thus, this article’s premise is somewhat confused. Yes, Keane doesn’t know the [laws]. But trying to prove that by referencing the wrong section of the FIFA document is equally incorrect.

  15. johnboy14 says:

    I think paddy was out of line to be honest. Keane is dead wrong in this case but whats playing in a CL final got to do with it. We wouldn’t have got to that 99 final in barcelona without keane. People forget these things.

  16. Willcole says:

    @best ever united player keano
    Quite clearly u have a very short memory or u don’t even know who Roy keane is. The club didn’t treat keane like shit he was sacked for bringing the club into disrepute which in any line of work is a stackable offence, plus openly lambasting your players and young players in the media is in no way good for team moral or young players development and incredibly disloyal. He never put utd before his country and he openly criticised the Ireland setup at the World Cup and after abusing the management and players he was sent home. He called ferguson for help and utd put him on a first class flight home and collected him from the airport with open arms (read his book it’s all in there). He also wasn’t Ireland’s best captain and was captain for a short time.

    You also compere him to Duncan Edwards but yet say England could never produce a captain like that yet at 21 Edwards was England captain and a better player than keane could ever be.

    “And would ave played for no wages at all” bollocks twice he held united for ransom to be our highest paid player and admitted he would have left if he didn’t get what he wanted.

    “sectarianism” wow where the fuck did that come from I think ur taking this a bit far don’t u, united have a long history of Scottish and Irish players and managers, the reason utd fan are so pissed is his lack of respect after all the clubs done for him, if u were a utd fan u might appreciate that.

    As far as England could never produce a captain like keane u ever heard of bobby Moore, Bryan Robson or terry butcher u disrespectful prick.

  17. Best ever united player keano says:

    he was right to give out about the players that were there st the time and comin through, they weren’t close to his standards or to wear MUFC jersey, fergie couldn’t swallow or accept that though, he wasn’t gonna admit he signed alot of average players, he eventually did but and off loaded most of them, silvestre, brown, oshea, park, Gibson, obertan, bebe, macheda, berba, Richardson, bardsley,piqué and nani Anderson Valencia young 2 da silvas could b classed as more average signings too, alot of money wasted, keane did pull out of a few international friendlys and was also accused of faking injury to avoid playing for Ireland, I thought maybe the sectarian divide between Celtic and rangers might have made some people dislike keane more maybe not, no need for crerands comments anyway

  18. Willcole says:

    For a start whats him pulling out of internationals because of injury got to do with putting utd before his country.
    Most of the players u name didn’t play for the club when keane was there, plus park berba da silva twins Valencia and Piqué average ? Yeah nice one mate.
    As for Keane critisizing players on tv it was not his right and If he thinks that is productive for the team and their development than maybe that’s why he had such a great managerial career, maybe u should be his assistant

    Once again catholic and Protestant religion has no influence on utd or their fans and never has


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