Soccer

"It makes me laugh" | Kevin Kilbane finds the irony in Keane's stinging criticism

Off The Ball
Off The Ball

10:33 6 Sep 2019

In the wake of Roy Keane's comments during Wednesday night's Off the Ball roadshow in association with Cadbury, Kevin Kilbane found the humorous side of the former Irish captain's criticisms about players taking it easy during international breaks. 

Of the numerous topics Roy Keane covered during his appearance on Off the Ball earlier this week, Kevin Kilbane is not yet quite up to speed with the full extent of the former Irish captain's conversational range.

Having played alongside Keane in Ireland's international set-up for a number of years, however, the irony of one particular issue Keane raised that was caught by Kilbane struck him as strange.

"Don't get me started on Jon [Walters]," began Keane, "I've worked with Jon [and] he talks a good game.

"He's done okay, and in the games where he was fit for Ireland he's done well."

During his spell as Martin O'Neill's assistant manager of the Republic of Ireland, Keane's issues with Walters were well publicised.

Taking exception to Walters' personally catered approach to training, Kevin Kilbane acutely recalled a similar situation playing out in their shared days as international teammates.

"The one thing that always makes me laugh though," explained Kilbane on Friday's OTB AM, "when Roy questions players turning up and not training at international level.

"I distinctly remember throughout my international career that there would always be a special exception made that Roy would always be able to turn up a day or two later than the rest of the squad.

"There was always that little bit of leeway made for our best player, of course."

Serving as both captain of Ireland and Manchester United, Keane has been regularly criticised for the perceived manner in which he occasionally favoured the latter commitment over the former.

Indeed, claims on Mick McCarthy's behalf regarding Roy Keane's unwillingness to play during a World Cup play-off tie against Iran served as a catalyst for Keane's decision to return from the said tournament in 2002.

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Jonathan Walters Kevin Kilbane Republic Of Ireland Roy Keane

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