Sport Soccer

Saturday 24 February 2018

Roy Keane left out in the cold

Roy Keane. Photo: Getty Images
Roy Keane. Photo: Getty Images
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

ROY KEANE'S exile from football will continue into the new year with Nottingham Forest appointing Alex McLeish as their new manager and Blackburn Rovers looking elsewhere for their next boss.

The Corkman was keen on the Forest job last summer and was linked with the post again this week after he was spotted at the 4-2 win over Leeds on Tuesday that preceded Sean O'Driscoll's departure. However, that was an unfortunate coincidence as the Corkman had agreed to attend the game a number of weeks ago and was not aware of imminent developments.

The swift appointment of McLeish confirms that Forest already had their man in mind.

Blackburn's decision to dispense with Henning Berg after just two months in charge opened up another vacancy that Keane had previously expressed an interest in, but Rovers are keen on former Aston Villa coach Kevin MacDonald, who was last week mentioned as a possible addition to Berg's coaching staff. MacDonald served as assistant manager to Steve Staunton during his ill-fated stint as Ireland boss and may be joined on the coaching ticket by the inexperienced coach Judan Ali.

Keane (right) was a candidate for the Rovers job prior to Berg's appointment, yet soundings out from both sides failed to lead to firm discussions and the indications are that Venky's chief football advisor, Shebby Singh, is looking down a different avenue.

Last time around, his shortlist included ex-Rovers players Tim Sherwood and Billy McKinlay – on the back-room staff at Spurs and Fulham respectively – rather than selecting from a large number of out-of-work candidates.

Former Blackburn boss Mark Hughes is also in the running for the post.

Keane was shown the door by Ipswich at the beginning of January, 2011 and made clear his desire to return to management after a short break.

He has since received approaches from abroad that he turned down to keep his options open in England.

Irish Independent

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