Keogh should have got the message before now on Trap and texting
Striker took to Twitter to chastise manager for manner of his omission from squad
Andy Keogh: maybe should maybe have known better about Giovanni Trapattoni’s limitations when it comes to social media. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho
Giovanni Trapattoni might suddenly have felt every one of his 74 years on Sunday after the way he felt the need to clarify the nature of his love for Kevin Doyle, but he must utterly confuse most of his contemporaries when Twitter comes into the conversation.
The Republic of Ireland manager has had his problems with it before, most obviously when James McClean threw a slight strop on it in Kazakhstan, but even that probably came as less of a surprise than Andy Keogh taking to the social media platform yesterday to chastise the Italian for his poor manners.
He might disagree himself, but many would regard Keogh, who has earned 25 of his 30 caps under Trapattoni, as something of a favourite of the Italian. True, he has actually featured in less than half of the coach’s games in charge but he has endured lean times on the club front during that time and it is likely he would have fared less well in terms of squads and appearances under a different boss.
Keogh, in any case, was clearly surprised to have missed out on Sunday when Trapattoni named a squad of 29 players for the World Cup qualifiers against Sweden and Austria.
Like Doyle, he’s entitled, of course, to feel disappointed, and might well wonder why the manager simply didn’t make it a preliminary squad of 30 and include him for the moment.
In the circumstances, describing himself as “gutted” is perfectly reasonable.
The “noloyalty” hashtag on the first of his twitter messages about his omission might be pushing things, however, and seems surprising given the pair have appeared to enjoy a mutually beneficial arrangement.
The suggestion, meanwhile, that a phone call or text message to warn him of his impending omission would have been “courteous” may only be stating the obvious but it seems to display a strange lack of awareness of the manager’s modus operandi.
Marco Tardelli outlined this back in March before the first games against Sweden and Austria when Doyle, far more of a regular than Keogh in his time, was dropped and also complained, albeit it having had a text from Trapattoni, but sent while he was out on the pitch playing for his club.
“I don’t know if, at their clubs, the manager calls them or sends them a message because they are together every day,” said Tardelli, pretty tetchily, when asked about the fairly mild griping that followed from Doyle at the time.
“I don’t think Roy Hodgson calls the England players always.
“We have 40 players and in the squad there are 23 players. Nobody called me to tell me to stay out or not. I was always in the squad but, when I finished being in the squad, nobody called me to tell me to stay out. I just stayed out. It’s normal: no message, no call, nothing. It’s football . . . it’s life.”
Trapattoni himself would be unlikely to put it quite so brutally; there might be a colourful saying from back home to illustrate the point, but he has got pretty worked up on more than one occasion about all of this when the subject has come up and once asked the press corps, in exasperation, if they thought the then England manager Fabio Capello rang around the night before a squad announcement to tell anyone who might expect to be included but was not going to be the bad news.
With Trapattoni such an approach might actually result in players to be left out hanging up the phone under the impression they’ve been included so texts would probably be a better bet. Something, of course, would be nice, but after more than five years of the Italian and some 60 games in charge, surely the Andy Keoghs of the world should know the score.