Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has backed Roy Keane to be a big success in management.
Fergie was quoted as saying in the Evening Standard:
“Roy will go on to be a manager, there is no question about that. He is very driven, a great influence and very determined. When I look at that I can see myself in Roy and Roy in me. He was fantastic to me, the best player I had, but I now see him going on to the next stage in his career and that is becoming a manager.”
Keane left United in November 2005 after 12-and-a-half years at Old Trafford and signed an 18-month deal with Celtic in December.
The 34-year-old had a contract at United that was due to expire at the end of the current season but left after his relationship with the club had deteriorated. The midfielder criticised the team in an interview on MUTV, which was never shown, and that appeared to have brought forward his departure.
Ferguson added that the decision to part with a player with whom he had such a close association was incredibly difficult:
“When you have guys who have given you such fantastic service it is tough when the time comes to say goodbye. It was time to go, it was time to part and the problem is when you fall in love with one of your players because of what they’ve done with you. Players almost become like family but when you get to that age they you have to make that terrible decision and change things.”
This signals quite a rare olive branch from Fergie, who is renowned for holding grudges with players he has fallen out with- such as Beckham, Stam and Brathez. He was reported in The Sun as being absolutely livid with Keano’s remarks in such a public forum about some of United’s new players- like Ji-Sung Park and Alan Smith, as well as some of MU’s younger players, for instance Darren Fletcher and Kieron Richardson.
It also begs the question, especially after Keano’s success at Cetic- is he back in line as a successor to Fergie as Man Utd.’s manager….?