Saturday 20 January 2018

Keane facing fitness race for Norway

Robbie Keane. Photo: Getty Images
Robbie Keane. Photo: Getty Images

Robbie Keane could miss out on some badly needed match practice after an ankle injury put his participation in tomorrow week’s home friendly with Norway in doubt, WRITES DANIEL McDONNELL.

Spurs manager Harry Redknapp yesterday revealed that the Irish captain had suffered the setback in training last Friday.

The London club are waiting on the results of a scan which will reveal the seriousness of the damage. It’s a setback for the Tallaght man, given that he was guaranteed involvement in the Aviva Stadium encounter.

Giovanni Trapattoni said that he was keen to use this friendly to provide Keane and goalkeeper Shay Given with match sharpness, considering they are out of favour with their clubs.

“I know he’s not fresh like two or three years ago, but for us now he’s still very important,” said the Irish boss. “It’s important that he plays against Norway. I think now he is not fit because he can only play 10 minutes here and there for Tottenham. But he’s 30, not 34 or 35.”

Keane has started just two games with Spurs this season, and has been tipped for a move away in January. Redknapp has acknowledged that the 30-year-old has been frustrated since the arrival of Rafael van der Vaart pushed him further down the pecking order.

His lack of sharpness was evident in Ireland’s Euro 2012 qualifiers with Russia and Slovakia last month, especially the latter game where he missed a penalty and squandered two other clear opportunities in a 1-1 draw.

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