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Robbie and Claudine jet in from LA

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Robbie and Claudine Keane

Robbie and Claudine Keane

Robbie and Claudine Keane

It's starting to feel a lot like Christmas. Not least because last Saturday, Robbie Keane and wife Claudine flew in from their base in Los Angeles to start the Yuletide proper with their young son Robert.

It being a short drive away from Dublin airport, one of Ireland's chicest couples were almost immediately ensconced in their second home on the ultra-exclusive Malahide enclave of Abington (also home to Nicky Byrne and wife Georgina and, until recently, Yvonne Keating)

Robbie and Claudine will be in Malahide for five or six weeks. They will no doubt be using their time in Dublin to reacquaint themselves with their hometown.

Indeed they were expected in House on Leeson Street last night.

It will be no surprise to see them popping up at various bling bolt-holes around the city over the Yule with Claudine's mother, Joan. For instance, Robbie was at the Mercedes lunch in Sophie's restaurant last Thursday along with Nicky Byrne and Cian Healy.

The Republic of Ireland's record goalscorer, Robbie, as his wont, will also be using his time over Christmas to visit sick children at Temple Street hospital.

My Deep Throat in his camp tells me that Robbie (who scored the winning goal two weekends ago in the MLS Cup Final for his team Los Angeles Galaxy as they beat the New England Revolution 2-1) will not be going out on loan to an English Premier League club during the off season in America. Robbie still has two years to run on his lucrative contract at LA Galaxy. So I can't imagine the star and his lovely wife and child leaving the heat and splendour of La La Land any time soon to return here to live. Maybe Ireland manager Martin O'Neill could swap Robbie for Roy as a very much less high-maintenance Assistant Manager?

Sunday Independent