Roy Keane’s move to Celtic may be confirmed today

O’Neill focusing on fine Irish showing against Italy at Craven Cottage as speculation continues

Speculation is mounting that talks held between Roy Keane and Celtic have led to a job offer, which he has accepted. Photograph: Nigel French/PA Wire

Speculation is mounting that talks held between Roy Keane and Celtic have led to a job offer, which he has accepted. Photograph: Nigel French/PA Wire

 

Speculation mounted last night that talks held over the weekend between Roy Keane and Celtic had led to a job offer, which he had accepted. An announcement is expected, possibly as early as today.

The Republic of Ireland squad will reconvene in Malahide tomorrow evening by which time Keane’s future should be a good deal clearer. Martin O’Neill is still determined that his assistant’s negotiations with Celtic will be resolved one way or the other before he and the players set off for America on Wednesday.

A couple of regulars – Seámus Coleman and John O’Shea – will skip the American trip. Robbie Keane will join the squad and Rob Elliot and the Stoke City contingent will return after weddings at the weekend.

O’Neill continued to sidestep questions on the matter in the wake of Saturday night’s entertaining 0-0 draw with Italy at Craven Cottage, merely reiterating his belief that the situation should be resolved by the time he and his players head away for games against Costa Rica and Portugal in Philadelphia and New York.

Further discussions

O’Neill left London pleased after a high quality friendly that brought out the best in players like Anthony Pilkington, Aiden McGeady and Jeff Hendrick.

“I thought he (Pilkington) did really well. He’s obviously had a few injury problems but he’s prepared to run and take players on and try and go past them and yeah, that was really encouraging. I thought he had an excellent hour for us.

“McGeady’s got feet like you wouldn’t believe, he’s really fantastic,” he continued.

“Wee Wes was causing problems (although) he got tired, he’s played the two games now and I have to say McClean coming on . . . but overall, I was really pleased with just about everyone. Jeff Hendrick did really well too and from a nervous start, I thought we improved as a side. (David) Forde made two great saves to keep us in it early on and from then on we were great.”

Sadly, though, the scoring opportunities the team created were again passed up and O’Neill’s frustration was clear.

“Awww, the chances, the chances! How often am I going to keep saying this? I have to say this though; you’ve heard the phrase, ‘At least we’re creating some’, and, hopefully, you never know, by September we might actually have learned to put in the net. Then again we might not.”

An otherwise good night was marred by the broken leg sustained by Riccardo Montolivo in a challenge by Alex Pearce early on that will keep him out of the World Cup. “I’m disappointed,” said O’Neill.

Disappointed

“I don’t think our player meant it but, of course, I’ve not seen it back and if it was a case that it wasn’t an accident I really genuinely apologise on behalf of us.

“That’s a man looking forward to a World Cup and now he’s missing out. I’m really genuinely disappointed, sorry.”

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.