‘Remember that time Roy nailed Fletch in the dressing room for looking at his phone’.
That makes better story than ‘I am glad this lad’s back. We have missed him’.
The Stoke City ace quips about the tremendous influence Roy Keane had on his career.
“It frustrates me that some people think Roy didn’t rate me because he probably molded me more than any other player I have known,” he told the Daily Mail. “He was hard on me but he was always fair. If he spoke to me 10 times, nine were compliments. If I was late, Roy would let me know. If my passing wasn’t on in training, then Roy would let me know.
“People remember the controversial stories and the times he went mental. But the rest of the time he made me feel on top of the world.”I just watched Roy and learned, but above all of
“I just watched Roy and learned, but above all of that, I just liked him. I still like him. He was an unbelievable leader and a fantastic player, the best first touch I ever saw.
“I walked on the pitch next to him and knew we would be fine. That is leadership. It’s what I want to do for people at this club [West Brom].”
It is no secret that the media are often drawn by drama and controversy over the truth. That is why in today’s UF Throwback Thursday, we embody the spirit of our throwback legend and shine the spotlight on our brutally honest birthday boy- Roy Keane.
We often overlook Roy Keane as a leader and great player thanks to the controversy that often shrouds him. But the Manchester United legend is as rare as it gets and they certainly don’t make them like him anymore. He was a perfect box-to-box midfielder. He could tackle, pass, score, you name it and he can execute it perfectly. He dominates the midfield, unlike any other player. He leads by example. Whether if there is a need to tackle, pass or score if something needs to be done he will get it done.
Not to mention, without Keane, United may not have won the treble. His performance in the semi finals of the UEFA Champions League is the stuff legends are made of. That was the night Keane taught the world what true leadership was. It was 21st of April 1999. Turin, Italy. Inzaghi put Juventus ahead with 2 goals in the first 11 minutes. Keane received a booking early-on in the match for tackling Zidane, which ruled him out of the final if United did qualify. But Roy Keane doesn’t give up so easily. He was determined to see his team reach the final. It did not matter to him whether or not he would be playing in the final. He treated this match like it was the final. Keane scored the first goal and inspired his comrades on the field with his determination and his relentless attitude to see this match through with a win. He was pulling all the stops in midfield, winning every tackle and leading by example. United produced a miracle 3-2 win, coming back from a 2 goal deficit to reach the finals in Barcelona.
After the match, Sir Alex Ferguson commented on his captain: “It was the most emphatic display of selflessness I have seen on a football field. Pounding over every blade of grass, competing if he would rather die of exhaustion than lose, he inspired all around him. I felt it was an honour to be associated with such a player.”
Roy Keane does not look like he will be leaving the footballing world anytime soon. The 46-year-old has expressed continued interest to return to management following his stint with Ipswich Town 6 years ago. With a possible move to Israel as manager on the horizon and being the assistant manager of the Republic of Ireland, there is a lot more Roy Keane to look forward to.
Meanwhile, let’s relive the Manchester United legend’s glory days as a footballer.