Keogh sacked over car crash role
Derby's Ireland defender contract terminated after refusing to accept pay cut following probe
Richard Keogh is set to enter a legal battle with Derby County after he was sacked for his part in the car crash that has put him out of football for 14 months.
The 33-year-old was offered a substantial pay cut on his £1.3 million-a-year (€1.5m) wages on a take-it-or-leave-it basis if he wanted to stay at the Championship club.
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That followed a Derby probe into events on a club-sanctioned night out that spiralled out of control after a group of players stayed out for longer.
Keogh was in the back seat of team-mate Tom Lawrence's Land Rover Sport when the vehicle crashed into a lamppost, with the Irish defender suffering anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligament damage.
It's an incident that also ended Keogh's hopes of participating in Euro 2020 and it's highly likely that he has played his last game for his country, with Stephen Kenny set to have assumed control from Mick McCarthy by the time he returns.
Keogh did not accept Derby's offer of a pay cut and was deeply unhappy with their stance. He has consulted lawyers and the PFA have also become involved in the matter.
A statement from Derby last night confirmed that the long-serving club captain had been shown the door.
"Derby County Football Club has completed the disciplinary hearing regarding Richard Keogh in respect of his involvement in the events of Tuesday, September 24," read the missive. "As a result of that process, Mr Keogh has had his contract terminated with immediate effect for gross misconduct. He has the right of appeal within 14 days.
"As we have said from the outset, the Club will not tolerate any of its players or staff behaving in a manner which puts themselves, their colleagues, and members of the general public at risk of injury or worse, or which brings the club into disrepute.
"The club will be making no further comment at this time regards this matter, until the conclusion of any potential appeal."
Keogh had 18 months to run on his £25,000-a-week deal. Lawrence and Mason Bennett were banned from driving for two years.