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Off The Ball
Off The Ball

12:41 6 Sep 2019


During an eventful spell in charge of Sunderland, Roy Keane recalled his foiled attempts to sign Matty Taylor. 

Having fallen out of favour under Harry Redknapp at Portsmouth, Keane attempted to lure the former English U-21 international to the north of England.

Giving Taylor a tour of the club, Roy Keane was under the initial impression that he had sold the idea of successfully moving the Sunderland.

That being said, there was still the lingering interest of Bolton Wanderers.

"Up at Sunderland, it was always difficult trying to get players up there to play," admitted Keane at an Off the Ball roadshow in association with Cadbury, "their wives didn't want to go up there because they wanted to go shopping.

"We eventually got Matty Taylor up because he was about to leave Portsmouth, and he had the opportunity to go to, I believe, Sunderland or Bolton.

"I met him at the stadium, up at the boardroom, and then gave him the talk for about an hour or two.

"He said, 'I've got a lot to think about, it's a big decision,' so I said, 'Yes, of course, you take your time. It's a huge decision. I'll walk you down to the car park,'

"As we walk down, he says 'Listen, Roy, thanks a lot, huge decision..' so I say 'You take your time, I understand it's a huge decision for you and your family."

Confident that Keane's Sunderland made for a more appealing move than Bolton, it was only when he had Taylor back in his car that he realised his misunderstanding of the midfielder's intentions.

"I walk him to his car," he recalled, "and all of a sudden, I get a text - not many people text me.

"I had my phone - it was a Blackberry, they were in at the time - and the text read, 'Hi Roy - it's Matty Taylor.'

"I could see him getting into his car! - 'I've decided to go to Bolton.'

"I waved him out of the car park!"

Off The Ball were in the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre with Roy Keane and Gary Neville with thanks to Cadbury, who are celebrating their third year as 'Official Snack Partner' to the Premier League.

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Bolton Manchester United Matty Taylor Portsmouth Republic Of Ireland Roy Keane Sunderland

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