Monday 24 July 2017

Robbie Keane accepts he will 'probably' leave Tottenham

Robbie Keane had a loan spell with West Ham last season in which he could not prevent the team being relegated. Photo: Getty Images
Robbie Keane had a loan spell with West Ham last season in which he could not prevent the team being relegated. Photo: Getty Images

Phil Medlicott

The Republic of Ireland captain, who will lead his country and win his 109th cap in tonight's friendly against Croatia, expects to leave his current club before the close of the transfer window at the end of August.

Keane, 31, has fallen behind several others, including Roman Pavlyuchenko and Jermain Defoe, in Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp's plans.



He has been linked with several clubs over the summer yet remains a Spurs player with just three days left before the start of the new Barclays Premier League season.



"It's probably likely that I will be going but I can't really answer where to at the moment," Keane said.



"There's obviously a lot of speculation but there's still a couple of weeks to go and we'll see what happens.



"I haven't turned down anything. I think there's a few people talking to the clubs but that's all I can really say at the moment.



"I'm sure in the next couple of weeks it will be sorted out. It's very unlikely anything will happen before the weekend."



Asked if his preference was to stay in London, Keane said: "No, I'll move.



"I don't know why this story keeps coming out that I want to stay in London. I've never said that. I'm quite happy to go anywhere.



"For me, it's just about playing regular football and if that's outside London I'm not too bothered."



Keane had a loan spell with West Ham last season in which he could not prevent the team being relegated.



He is not looking at dropping out of the top flight when he leaves White Hart Lane.



Keane said: "Of course clubs have to agree a fee but, not being disrespectful at all to the Championship, if I got an option to play in the Premier League, I'm obviously going to take that.



"But there's been no talk of any Championship team."



Keane may have struggled at club level recently but his form for the Republic suggests he can still perform at a high level.



In June, he scored both goals in a 2-0 Euro 2012 qualifying victory over Macedonia to take his total to 51 goals in 108 international appearances.



That made him the first British or Irish player to reach a half-century of senior international goals, and there is little sign of the inspirational skipper letting up any time soon.



The Republic face potentially crucial qualifying games against Slovakia and Russia at the start of September, and Keane insists he will be fully focused come the time of those games.



Indeed he has pledged to carry on playing at international level for as long as his body will let him.



"I just take each game as it comes and as long as I'm still feeling fit with no injuries, I'll carry on," Keane said.



Shane Long, whose move from Reading to West Brom was confirmed yesterday, will line up alongside Keane in attack for Ireland tonight.



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