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Robbie's back in the groove in LA

ROBBIE Keane (pictured) says he's glad to be back to work with LA Galaxy after the winter break as the MLS side reported back for pre-season training.

The Ireland captain has been off duty since early December, when he helped his club beat New England Revolution to claim the MLS Cup, and Keane used the break to spend time back home in Dublin.

But with the new MLS season due to start in March, Keane and Galaxy are back in pre-season and the Tallaght man is pleased to get back to work.

"It's nice to be back training again," Keane said. "It was nice to be back at home with the family and see all my friends and family, but the last few weeks, I've been itching to get back playing again."

Keane was busy during the winter break. His first cousin, Bohemians striker Jason Byrne, said last week that Keane stayed in shape by playing five-a-side games in Tallaght with friends and family like Byrne, while Keane also got down to work by attending a coaching course in Dublin for his UEFA coaching qualifications.

Keane was on the same course as current League of Ireland players like Stephen O'Donnell, Evan McMillan and former Derry City man Danny Ventre.

And Galaxy coach Bruce Arena is pleased to see Keane in good shape - this is the first time since the Dubliner's move to LA that he has taken a full part in pre-season as on previous occasions he has been recovering from injury or has been on loan in England.

"He's doing fine. He looks alright because he's done a little work at home," says Arena.

Keane and his club resume competitive action in the MLS on March 6th but their pre-season schedule will see them head to Europe. They take on Hammarby in Sweden on February 16 and also face up to Shamrock Rovers in Keane's native Tallaght on February 21.