Roy Keane

WATCH: Robbie Mustoe’s All-Time Premier League defensive midfielders

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Selecting the five best defensive midfielders in the Premier League era is a massive challenge.

Few are better-suited for the gig than our own Robbie Mustoe.

Known now as one-half of The 2 Robbies, Mustoe put together a career with more than 200 Premier League appearances in the center of the park.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Mustoe spent the lion’s share of his career with Middlesbrough, where he scored 12 top-flight goals. He also spent time with Charlton Athletic, Oxford United, and Sheffield Wednesday.

The five men he selected all played in this century, two remain active, and each has claimed at least one Premier League title.

See the video at the top of the page to learn their identities, and head here to watch Kyle Martino detail his top five entertainers of the Premier League era.

What we love about Manchester United

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This week at ProSoccerTalk we will be detailing what we love about each Premier League club competing in the 2019-20 season and next up is Manchester United.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Each day we will release details on why who adore each team in particular as we remind ourselves just how awesome the PL is as we await its return following the suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Today we head to Old Trafford.


Glory (Glory, Man United): Whether you love or hate them, the stadium song is now dancing through your mind. One, if not the best most recognizable and supported clubs in the world, United has done a ton of winning. No one has as many English top-flight titles than United’s 20. They’ve won a European treble, a continental treble, three UEFA Champions League crowns, two European doubles, and three other doubles for good measure. Winners of a combined 17 FA and League Cups, the Red Devils are two-plus seasons removed from their last silverware run (Europa League and FA Cup, 2016/17). History says one is coming soon.

Pick your favorite legend: The list of players to shine at Old Trafford is deep, and it’s difficult to pick a favorite in order to wax poetic. Is it the supreme vision and global star power of David Beckham? The unheralded-so-much-he’s-over-heralded Paul Scholes? How about the eye-popping 927 first team appearances from Ryan Giggs or combustible goal-collector Wayne Rooney.

We choose Roy Keane, perhaps because we’re worried what would happen if it got back to him that we didn’t. A PFA Team of the Century member, the Irish midfielder was capable of crunching tackles but was also very good with the ball. Plus he jumpstarted the big beard trend when he coached at Aston Villa.

And again: He’s terrifying.

Manchester United
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Sir Alex Ferguson: The legendary boss’ shadow (and actual physical presence) looms over every boss who walks through the doors of Old Trafford. The 78-year-old Scottish boss spent 1986-2013 as Red Devils boss, winning 13 Premier League titles and two Champions Leagues. He claimed four divisional crowns between St. Mirren and Aberdeen before moving to United, and he adores the sport. Witness:

The Academy record: Manchester United has boasted an academy graduate in its 18-man matchday squad for more than 4,000-consecutive senior matches. From Bobby Charlton to George Best, Paul Scholes to Paul Pogba, the club’s youth has delivered products for its first team in reliable fashion.

“Giving young players a chance is a tradition that we are very proud of; It’s part of our DNA and you learn that very quickly when you join the club,” said current United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

It’s something to be respected. Only one of the fellas pictured below didn’t come up through the United academy.

(Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

Roy Keane joins Sky Sports as a pundit

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Grab your popcorn. Roy Keane is back as a regular Premier League pundit.

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The legendary Manchester United midfielder, who won seven PL titles with the Red Devils, has been announced as Sky Sports’ latest new pundit, joining Jose Mourinho, Gary Neville, Graeme Souness and Jamie Carragher among others.

In a statement released on Saturday, our partners as Sky say Keane will be with them ‘throughout the season’ and his first game in the studio will be at Stamford Bridge for Chelsea v. Liverpool this Sunday (Watch live, 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

“I’ve worked with Sky Sports quite a few times over the years and it’s always been an experience I’ve enjoyed, so this makes absolute sense,” Keane said. “While I’m not coaching I still want to be involved in the game and in some ways, this is the next best thing.

“It’s a game of opinions, I’ve never shied away from giving mine and that’s only going to continue this season. Sky Sports has always been famous for the heated debates – I look forward to starting a few more.”

Keane will be appointment viewing, and just like in his playing days, he is never scared to tell it how it is. And then some. He has been working as a pundit for ITV covering England games and international tournaments, while he has also been the assistant coach for the Republic of Ireland, Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest in recent seasons.

After being a head coach at Sunderland and Ipswich Town in the past, he now appears to be focusing more on punditry.

Expect plenty of heated debates between Mourinho and Keane in the Sky Sports studio this season.

Roy Keane departs Nottingham Forest to seek out managerial job

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Former Manchester United captain and current Nottingham Forest assistant manager Roy Keane has departed the club with immediate effect, Forest announced on Sunday.

While the official team release did not give a reason for his departure, The Telegraph reports that Keane is on the hunt for his own managerial position and has decided to activate an opt-out clause in his contract that allows him to leave this summer.

The 47-year-old apparently “spent weeks mulling over the decision” according to the report, and has decided that the time is right for him to seek out his first managerial spot since departing Ipswich Town in 2011. Keane has been Martin O’Neill’s right-hand man since joining his Republic of Ireland staff in 2013 where the two came within a playoff loss to Denmark of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup. He followed O’Neill to Nottingham Forest in March where the two helped lead the club to a ninth-placed finish.

The Telegraph report states the departure from the club was “amicable” and that O’Neill had even apparently hoped Keane would make this decision as he believes the formeer Manchester United midfielder deserves his own job.

“Working with Martin over the last few years has been a magnificent experience, one of my greatest in football both as a player and a coach and one I want to personally thank him for,” Keane said as part of the club release.

Keane has Premier League managerial experience, having led Sunderland to promotion in 2008, but was forced to step down the following campaign with the club sitting 18th in the Premier League table in November and strains with both the players and club ownership putting pressure on his position.

Roy Keane launches scathing attack on Everton, Koeman

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Roy Keane could start an argument in an empty room.

This time, he started one in a room full of journalists and cameras.

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On Tuesday the assistant manager of the Republic of Ireland responded to claims from Everton manager Ronald Koeman that Ireland had misused his midfielder James McCarthy who played against Georgia and Moldova last month.

McCarthy, 25, has hardly featured for Everton this season and has suffered a hamstring injury after Koeman’s complaints, as the Dutch manager said Ireland were “killing the player” after he played following a return from a groin injury.

Keane’s response to McCarthy withdrawing from the squad to face Austria (he stated he had a hamstring injury) for their crucial 2018 World Cup qualifier in Group D, and Koeman’s comments, was typically combative.

“Clubs are always going to be selfish and want to look after their own players. We are lucky with the Everton lads. We had a problem previously with Martinez. We felt he was over the top when the Everton players were turning up. It’s not a criticism of their players but more for Everton and their staff. They’re always carrying knocks. I always thought the Everton players were going to turn up on crutches or crawling in the hotel door. Now it looks like we are going to have that issue with Koeman.

“Everton, as a football club, I’m not sure when the last time they won a trophy. I think it was a good number of years ago. Maybe overloading players is a good thing. That means your club is being successful,” Keane said. “That’s a player playing week in, week out, playing midweek games. But Everton don’t play European football and they are out of the League Cup. I think Norwich beat them at Goodison so maybe Everton as a club, and it’s a brilliant football club, maybe their players need to toughen up a bit.”

He was then pushed on the matter, asked if Ireland should try their best to keep a good relationship with Everton moving forward?

The former Manchester United and Ireland captain isn’t around to make friends…

“Not really, no. Why do we need a good relationship with Everton? Listen, they are lucky to have the Irish lads they’ve got there. Everton have traditionally have had brilliant Irish players doing well for the football club. So they shouldn’t be so quick to stop Irish players coming to play for Ireland,” Keane said. “I’ve experienced that myself [trepidation as manager over international players being injured] and I can understand it a little bit. But if a player is fit to travel and feels he can play a game, especially in a qualifying game – there’s always more understanding with friendly games — then they should get their heads round that.”

“For example Seamus and James, particularly for Seamus Coleman, what a player he’s been for Everton. Why would they try and begrudge Ireland having these players available to us. Darren Gibson is Irish. Gibbo misses lots of games for Everton. A hell of a lot of games, and he seems to get injured at Everton. So maybe they need to look at their own training schedule. Koeman’s opinions, no issues with me. I couldn’t care less to be honest with you.”

Never change Roy, never change.

It will be intriguing to hear what Koeman says in response to Keane as the outspoken individual once again exhibited his undying passion to say what he thinks no matter the consequence. Part of him seems to do it to create headlines but by now it all seems very genuine.

There’s a message hidden in all of this for managers of Premier League teams: Ireland will call up whoever they want whenever they want as they aim to qualify for their first World Cup since 2002.