Everton chairman Bill Kenwright has slammed Manchester United legend Roy Keane for his “unfair” comments regarding injured players…
Former Manchester United star Roy Keane “‘ays some stupid things,’ according to Everton chairman Bill Kenwright.
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The Republic of Ireland assistant manager accused the Toffees of pressuring their players into putting their club ahead of their country, but Kenwright claimed the allegations were “stupid” and “unfair”.
Keane suggested that Seamus Coleman and James McCarthy were told to exaggerate their injuries and withdraw from international duty, something which the 69-year-old took exception too.
“I’m a big fan of Roy Keane’s but he does say some stupid things,” Kenwright was quoted by Goal.
“That is just totally totally unfair. We absolutely love our players going on international duty and we never ever get in the way of them and Roberto Martinez will be as shocked as everyone at Everton.”
Keane is known for his controversial views and statements, and has been in the spotlight more than ever recently following the release of his latest book.
Ireland boss Martin O’Neill has more of a sensible and experienced head on his shoulders, and took the more diplomatic route when quizzed about the allegations. He claimed not to have heard Keane’s comments, and gave the Toffees pair the benefit of the doubt considering their injury histories.
“I haven’t picked up on Roy’s comments,” he said.
“I don’t follow him around. I haven’t had the chance to read what he has said.
“From my own perspective, regardless of what Roy has said, I think the situation was this: way back the two lads were not fit for the games against Gibraltar and Germany [in October] and obviously played for Everton a couple of days later. That is understandable.
“I had spoken to Seamus and Seamus just wasn’t right. I didn’t speak to James at the time but there was a thought that he might have played against Manchester United then but didn’t do so.
“I hadn’t really a problem with that at all. It was just that, this particular time, James does have a muscle injury. He came here, he was wanting to try it and really wanted to give it a go.
“We always thought that time would be against us and I think he will be perfectly all right to play at the weekend for his club and really there isn’t much more I can say about it.