Monday 11 December 2017

'You have to trust the security' - Roy Keane unconcerned by terror threat ahead of Euros

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane has claimed that the staff and players are unconcerned by the terror threat hanging over the Euros, despite the latest series of attacks in Brussels.

Back in November, a terrorist wearing a suicide vest tried to gain access to the Stade de France, where Ireland play Sweden in their first game of the tournament on 13, as France played Germany in a friendly.

Days later, a game between Germany and the Netherlands in Hanover was cancelled 90 minutes before kick-off after authorities received 'concrete evidence' that an attack may be imminent.

Explosions, at least one likely caused by a suicide bomber, rocked the Brussels airport and subway system today, prompting a lockdown of the Belgian capital and heightened security across Europe.

At least 26 people were reported dead and dozens of others injured.

Keane was asked at a press conference today in Abbotstown whether there were any concerns over security ahead of Ireland's involvement at Euro 2016.

Keane said: "No, not fresh concerns. We actually had a meeting last night about the trip in the summer and we got a heads-up on all the security.

"But it was just obviously shocking news for us to see it this morning and obviously our thoughts are with everybody who suffered. It's horrendous."

Asked if he was satisfied everything was in place for the summer, when Ireland will be based at Versailles, Keane said: "Yes, we think so, but obviously our job is just to focus on the games and let the security team take care of everything else.

"But no, it's not a concern for the staff or the players. There's security in place and we have to trust them, and that's what we do. We are going over there to focus on the football."

The players woke to the news at their hotel in Castleknock and the thoughts of Birmingham midfielder Stephen Gleeson, sitting alongside Brentford counterpart Alan Judge as they spoke to the media after training, were for the families affected by the attacks.

Gleeson said: "We are actually rooming together and we woke up and obviously had it on our phones, and you just switch on the TV and you just see what's going on. Straight away, you just think what it would be like to be there and the families that are going to be affected.

"I don't think a lot of the lads have talked about it. There were a few at breakfast speaking about it, but you just straight away think of the families that are going to be affected by it."

Terrorist attacks in Belgium have highlighted the importance of high security at this summer's Euro 2016, according to France's Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve.

"The events in Brussels remind us of the very high level of security which is necessary to ensure Euro 2016 is successful," said Cazeneuve, who at a press conference said the government would contribute £1.5million for CCTV projects to cover fan zones during the tournament.

"Euro 2016 must combine sportsmanship, festivity and security for the teams, coaches and fans.

"It is 80 days to the start of Euro 2016 and the organisers, cities and state services are fully mobilised.

"Euro 2016 should be a celebration but collective security is an obligation for everyone alongside the government."

UEFA has yet to make any response in relation to Euro 2016 security in the wake of Tuesday's attacks in Belgium.

Online Editors

Promoted Links

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport