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Too big a player? - 23/05/2002

Too big a player?
   Roy Keane
 Leagues & Cups:
   World Cup

It can’t be a happy camp for the Irish when your top player seems to have it in for the gaffer. Whether it's the hotels, training facilities, or personality clashes, I still think Roy Keane has made a mistake. It's a simple fact that the Irish FA haven’t got massive resources, it would be unfair to expect them to match the money that the England F.A. will be spending. So your facilities for training and the hotels aren’t exactly five star, but I think it's the personlity clash that is the deciding factor. Roy Keane, great player as he is, is used to getting his own way. I don't know how Alec Ferguson keeps him happy, maybe Mick McCarthy doesn't command the respect of Keane? There’s obviously history between McCarthy and Keane, I know that Keane didn’t turn up to McCarthy’s testimonial, so the relationship has been dodgy for some time.

If a manager gets a mouthful from a player, he’s got to let the player – and the rest of the team know who’s boss. If he takes the abuse, then he’ll lose face and credibility. The situation has been made worse with the FAI getting involved. In effectively taking Keane’s side, they’ve also undermined McCarthy. I know who I feel sorry for, and when this should be a great time for the bloke, he’ll be under massive pressure and feeling very upset. I hope Ireland do well, and if they do, then Mick McCarthy deserves all the accolades that Jack Charlton picked up.

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