Keane re-ignites war of words with Walters

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Roy Keane has re-opened his war of words with former Republic of Ireland international Jon Walters. By PA

The former Ireland skipper, who served for five years as Martin O’Neill’s assistant manager with the national team, famously crossed swords with Walters and Harry Arter over their managed training regimes in a spat which was later detailed by defender Stephen Ward in a leaked WhatsApp audio message.

Speaking at a Cadbury’s Off The Ball roadshow at the Bord Gais Theatre in Dublin on the eve of the Republic’s Euro 2020 qualifier against Switzerland, Keane referred to an emotional television appearance made by Walters in which he spoke about the death of his mother when he was 11 years old.

Jonathan Walters celebrates scoring a late equaliser for the Republic of Ireland in a World Cup qualifier against Austria
Jonathan Walters celebrates scoring a late equaliser for the Republic of Ireland in a World Cup qualifier against Austria (Niall Carson/PA)

Keane said:

He talks a good game. Imagine if he’d won a trophy. He goes on the TV about how he was harshly treated by me. He’s crying on the TV about his family situation.

Maybe he should lie low for a while. Have a look at his medals? That wouldn’t take long.”

Walters’ goals proved pivotal in Ireland’s qualification for the Euro 2016 finals, but Keane was dismissive about his contribution, turning his attention to another old foe Jason McAteer, who fired 10-man Ireland to World Cup qualifier victory over Holland in 2001, in the process.

How many years ago is that? How long is he going to live off that? A certain player scored against Holland and he still is.”

Keane and O’Neill parted company with Ireland in November last year, days after a 0-0 Nations League draw in Denmark brought an end to a run of nine games in the calendar year which yielded just one win.

Keane admitted he sensed the writing was on the wall when businessman Denis O’Brien ended his agreement to pay a significant proportion of the management team’s wages, and defended their record.

With the Irish job, I loved every minute of it. People still say to me, ‘Sorry it didn’t work out with Ireland’. I say ,’It did’.

We had two proper campaigns. We qualified and got to a play-off. If every Irish manager did that, Irish football would be in a decent place.

I think Martin was harshly treated, but we’ll survive. We are big boys. Life goes on.”

Having worked under O’Neill once again in his short spell in charge at Nottingham Forest, former Sunderland and Ipswich boss Keane hinted that he is ready to return to management in his own right and defended his methods.

People say I was very demanding as if I should almost apologise for it, particularly when I’m in a coaching role.

Brian Clough – you’re on about motivation – he punched me one time. He was upset. It was heated. He punched me. I remember thinking ‘You’re still a brilliant manager’. I came in the next day and trained. I didn’t text somebody in the media. Or go on Ratsapp.”

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Saturday 30th May - Football ACCA

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14:30

Hertha Berlin vs Augsburg

Both Teams To Score & Over 2.5 Goals

Hertha Berlin have scored at least 2 goals in their last 5 games and have been in great form, since the league resumed. Augsburg had a very impressive 3-0 win away at Schalke last time out and this fixture usually rains goals, so hopefully it will today as well.

14:30

Mainz vs Hoffenheim

Both Teams To Score & Over 2.5 Goals

This fixture has averaged just under 6 goals in the last 4 fixtures, Hoffenheim have scored in 9 of their last 10 away games and Mainz have had both teams to score in 3 of their last 4 home games. Past fixture results is the main  reason behind this selection.

14:30

Schalke vs Werder Bremen

Both teams to score

Schalke have not been in good form since the resumption of the league, they are conceding lots of goals and have been pretty poor. Werder Bremen have a very good record away at Schalke and have won 4 of the last 5 games. I wouldn’t be surprised if this was a draw but both teams will probably concede. 

14:30

Wolfsburg vs Eintracht Frankfurt

Both Teams To Score & Wolfsburg Win

Wolfsburg come into this on the back of a great 4-1 win over Leverkusen. Eintracht Frankfurt did pretty well against Bayern, scoring 2 goals and almost getting back into it. This looks like another game of goals and I fancy Wolfsburg will get back to back wins and Frankfurt will get a another goals in defeat.

17:30

Bayern Munich vs Düsseldorf

Bayern Munich to win both halves

Bayern Munich pretty much won the title with the victory over Dortmund and I can’t seem them sitting back here. Dusseldorf are not in bad form but I expect Bayern to run riot here, scoring 4 or 5 in a big victory. 

Returns and odds correct at time of publishing.