If you’ve been paying attention to UK news outlets over the past few days, you’re probably aware that former Manchester united and Republic or Ireland captain Roy Keane is releasing a new book.
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Keane’s second autobiography, titled “Second Half” was accidentally sold by a supermarket chain in England on Monday and national outlets have started to leak out excerpts of Keane’s latest memoirs ahead of the release.
The current assistant manager of the Irish national team and Premier League side Aston Villa, Keane also juggles being a television pundit as he continues his work in the game after retiring in 2006. Keane, 43, is known as one of the most fearsome captains and leaders in Premier League history with the Red Devils facing several issues on and off the pitch during his storied career.
Here are a few of the more notable extracts from his new book, which should whet your appetite for the whole shebang when it’s released.
Keane on fighting with Peter Schmeichel in Hong Kong on a preseason tour:
“There’d been a little bit of tension between us over the years, for football reasons. Peter would come out shouting at players, and I felt sometimes he was playing up to the crowd, ‘Look at me!’ He was probably doing it for concentration levels, but I felt he did it too often, as if he was telling the crowd, ‘Look what I have to deal with.’ He said, ‘I’ve had enough of you. It’s time we sorted this out.’ So I said, ‘OK,’ and we had a fight. It felt like 10 minutes. There was a lot of noise – Peter’s a big lad. I woke up the next morning. I kind of vaguely remembered the fight. My hand was really sore and one of my fingers was bent backwards… Butty (Nicky Butt) had refereed the fight. Anyway, Peter had grabbed me, I’d head-butted him – we’d been fighting for ages.”
Keane on stability, having a “mid-life crisis” and the self-destruct button:
“That’s the self-destruct button. I don’t know if it’s low self-esteem. Things might be going really well, and I don’t trust it: ‘It’s not going to last,’ or ‘Why am I getting this? Why are things going so well?… I have great stability in my life. But then, that worries me. I like home comforts, but then I want to be this hell-raiser – but I want my porridge in the morning. I want my wife and kids around me. I’ve dipped into this madness, and I don’t like it that much. Maybe I’m like every man on the planet – I don’t know; I want a bit more than what’s on offer. My midlife crisis has been going for years. Someone once said to me – an ex-player and it’s going back to my drinking days – that going out with me was like going out with a time-bomb.”
Keane on apologizing to Sir Alex Ferguson after the row which saw him leave the club:
“Now I kind of wish I hadn’t (apologized). Afterwards I was thinking, ‘I’m not sure why I f****** apologized’. I just wanted to do the right thing.”
Keane on ‘that’ MUTV interview which Ferguson took exception to and effectively ripped up his contract:
“The idea that I was in the studio ranting and raving, no… I was told the interview was being pulled. They couldn’t believe what I had said. I didn’t think it was too bad. I thought everyone was overreacting.”
Keane on his conversation with Ferguson after agreeing he could leave for Celtic at the end of his career:
“I said to Ferguson, ‘Can I play for somebody else?’ And he said, ‘Yeah you can, ‘cos we’re tearing up your contract’ So I thought, ‘All right – I’ll get fixed up.’ I knew there’d be clubs in for me when the news got out. I said, ‘Yeah – I think we have come to the end.’ I just thought, ‘F******’ p****’ – and I stood up and went ‘Yeah. I’m off.'”
Keane on surprising people who think he is just a “skinhead thug”:
“I don’t get as angry as people might think. But it might help me. As soon as I walk into a room, I know people are apprehensive; I know they are. They are expecting some kind of skinhead thug. So I’ve a good way of disappointing them. I think I treat people pretty well. I’ve got friends I’ve known for 30 years. If I was some impatient thug, I think they’d keep their distance from me.”