Former skipper Roy Keane shocked Manchester United fans by claiming he has cleaned the club from his memory and couldn’t care less if Chelsea pip them to the title. The Ipswich Town boss is a legend at Old Trafford and is still adored by the club’s fans where he played 479 games over a 12 year period, won seven league titles and donned the captain’s armband.
“I’m pretty sure they have wiped me from their history and I have wiped them from mine, so I have no interest whatsoever” he blasted “It’s pretty scary actually, but you move on. Don’t get me wrong, you always have a little interest in your old team, but I also have that with Rockmount, Cobh, Sunderland, Forest and Celtic but if you think I’m waiting and hoping that they win these trophies I’m not”
In an apparent swipe at United, Keane added “I have seen at the business end what these clubs can do to people, so I take that with a pinch of salt. I don’t have any attachments to these clubs emotionally. I’m relaxed about it and all my priorities are with Ipswich. It’s strange but I have very, very little interest in the clubs I played for in the past”
While Keane’s emotional ties are clearly severed at Old Trafford, he suggested that the title could still go either way, insisting both Man United and leaders Chelsea are capable of winning their two remaining games. Chelsea lead United by a single point and travel to Liverpool on Sunday before hosting Wigan on the final day of the season.
United visit Keane’s former club Sunderland this weekend before entertaining Stoke at Old Trafford and Keane has rubbished the idea that Liverpool will roll over at Anfield in order to allow Chelsea to win the title just to spite the Red Devils.
“Rubbish, if anyone thinks Liverpool will go out and happily allow their opponents to win, they’re living in cuckoo land” he blasted “Chelsea are more than capable of going there, flexing their own muscles and turning them over. Their record is not bad at Anfield in terms of league matches.
“But the table at the end of the season won’t lie and whoever wins the league wins it. Both team could win their last two games and that means Chelsea will be champions – and that would mean very little to me”
Town manager has also expressed his belief that alcohol related problems are ‘an issue with Irish players’ admitting that he was something of a tearaway in his younger days but believes there is an underlying problem with footballers, particularly young Irishmen.
“It’s a problem especially in the Irish players. In my short time in management I notice that just about every incident we have had to deal with is drink related “It’s an issue with Irish players especially when you stop playing and you are getting up for the day and there is no buzz.
When I was having my own escapades I hope I was being young and raw and stupid. I went too far sometimes, but my social life in that way had a short life span. The penny dropped a few years ago for a number of reasons. Thank God”
Keane is a friend of former United team mate Paul McGrath whose problems with alcohol have been well documented “I was talking to Paul a couple of months ago. Everybody loves him, but he knows the score. He knows where to go and get help. He has to help himself, I can’t do it for him
“I care about Paul, I care about the man. When the playing stops the buzz goes, but for some lads the need is there even when playing. When you stop there is a bit of boredom, people throw drink at you, it does not help. Paul knows where to go. He has to want it.
Living in Ireland, the drink is going to be there all the time. When I come back I get a bit of a buzz for two or three days. It’s embedded in us. This thing of ‘let’s get out, there’s something on here and there’. It’s in the air”
Does Keane have any reason to feel bitter with United?