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Keane for Fergie to get a grip - 01/09/2002

Keane for Fergie to get a grip
Time to take stock
   Roy Keane

Well the whole media tribe has gone into meltdown with the Roy Keane situation, so am I going to jump on the bandwagon? Yeh, course so…

Firstly, and I genuinely mean this, in my opinion Roy Keane is one the best players in the world – not just the Premiership, the world. But I think, here lies the problem. When you have someone with his ability, confidence is massive and money is not an issue for him. So what am I getting at? Well he’s simply become too big. He sets standards that others fail to meet, he becomes frustrated and his character flaw lets him down. How can you punish him? It’s no good hitting him in the pocket, what’s £50 - £100,000 to him? The only thing that will work is to take his ball away from him – literally.

For me, some of the blame has to rest with Alex Ferguson, he’s the only man that Keane appears to look up to. It’s all very well backing your player’s to the hilt, but there comes a time when he’s got to take it on the chin and admit that he’s gone too far. If Keane keeps hearing excuse from his manager, he’s far less likely to discontinue his antics. Now you have to realise something here…what Ferguson says to the camera will be quite different to what he says to Keane in private. Perhaps if Ferguson did stick his neck out, it’d be the wake-up call that we all know Keane needs?

It’s going to be interesting to see what happens when Roy returns to the game. You can liken it to the Cantona Crystal Palace incident which resulted in a long ban. He’s going to be out for some months and on his return, you can bet your bottom dollar that the media are going to circling like a pack of hounds. One false move and they’ll be down his throat. But, and I think this will be crucial…players are now going to be looking out for him – more than ever before. They’ll be trying their utmost to get him to snap, he’ll have comments, nips, kicks, and the kitchen sink thrown at him. If he’s not prepared, or he’s not quite right, you can guess the consequences.

I hope this doesn’t happen, but in reality I’m sure it will. Love him or loath him, he’s a character that adds to the brilliance and fascination of the game.

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