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Dermo
11-18-2005, 09:08 AM
LONDON, Nov 18 (Reuters) - Manchester United captain Roy Keane is leaving after more than 12 years at the club, a spokesman said in a shock announcement on Friday.

Midfielder Keane, 34, joined the former champions in 1993 from Nottingham Forest for a then British record fee and has been the lynchpin of Britain's most famous club for a decade.

"Manchester United has today reached agreement with Roy Keane for Roy to leave the club with immediate effect," the club said in a statement.

"The agreement allows Roy to sign a long-term deal with another club to enable him to secure his playing career beyond what would have been the end of his contract at United in the summer."

Ireland's Keane bowed out of international football last month, two days after the country's World Cup hopes ended in a match the injured player could only watch.

Manchester United said they had offered Keane, one of the most controversial figures in English football, a testimonial in recognition of his time at Old Trafford.

"The club thanks Roy for his major contribution to the club during his years of service," they said.

Dermo69
11-18-2005, 11:11 AM
I think Roy Keane's departure form Manchester United was a natural progression from the recent events at Old Trafford.

In September, Keane announced that he did not think he would be a Manchester United player next season, he was then heavily critical of his team-mates in an interview on MUTV.

Although the interview, which took place after the 4-1 defeat by Middlesbrough was never aired, its contents, including a rant about the lack of commitment of several squad members, became public knowledge.

I told Sky Sports News he thinks that interview, in conjunction with the news that his contract would not be renewed, spelt the end of his time at Old Trafford.

"In some ways I'm surprised and in others I'm not," he said. "I think it's a reaction to what happened a few weeks ago when he criticised his team-mates publicly.

"If you combine that with the fact the club weren't willing to renew his contract at the end of the season, he has probably said 'well, I'll go now rather than wait'."

Keane famously walked out on the Republic of Ireland World Cup training camp in 2002 and I believe it was that same courage of his convictions that caused him to prematurely end his 12-year career at Manchester United.

"At this stage in his career, taking everything in to consideration, I don't think it will have been that tough a decision to come to.

"He's very straightforward and you do get it straight from the horse's mouth when he talks. He wouldn't have thought twice about saying let's do it now, let's move on.

"And the club had already made their decision."

Unlike me, a fellow former Old Trafford favourite Lou Macari is struggling to believe that United have parted company with their skipper and says it will be a tough job to fill his boots.

"It's a real bolt out of the blow. I can't believe the news because I have always thought of Roy as a major part of Manchester United," he told Sky Sports News

"Obviously the powers that be have sat down and come to a decision and it is no longer a case that he is a part of Manchester United. I'm staggered to be honest with you.

"There is always a place for Roy Keane in the team," he added. "I think the value of players like Keane, Scholes, the Nevilles and Ryan Giggs, who all came through together about 12 years ago, will only be fully recognised when they are gone.

"We have been talking for about 12 or 18 months about who will replace Roy Keane and he is irreplaceable."

But I'm confident that a replacement will be found and so United can go onto thrive in a new era without Roy Keane.

"No player has ever been bigger than Manchester United. The club will go on and they will look to get stronger.

"It is one of those situations that just prove that no matter how bigger name you are the club will be strong and go on to be strong and the player will be confined to the history book."

Eimz_T
11-18-2005, 08:11 PM
i refuse to believe it!! Roy is GOD!!!