Roy Keane Interview with Tommy Gorman - RTE Continued from Keane / Gorman Interview 1
This Interview First Appeared on RTE Television on 27 May 2002
Venue : Moat House Hotel, Manchester
Tommy Gorman - RTE : Do you accept that the language used wasn't very nice. Alex Ferguson has used expletives in his time and I know Mick McCarthy has done, but would accept that it's not the kind of language one expects from a leader of men.
Roy Keane: This was a private team meeting. I didn't call the press conference 15 minutes after the team meeting. I didn't go on and say what apparently people were saying.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : But what about the language itself. Do you accept that it wasn't very complimentary to Mick McCarthy and he was justified in feeling hurt by it?
Roy Keane: Justified in questioning my loyalty to my country? With the lads in front of us saying that in the Iran match I faked an injury? He knew I wasn't right. He spoke to Alex Ferguson on that Sunday morning, I hadn't played for three and a half weeks. I reported, played on the Saturday, we won 2-0 and the manager said that's a positive result. I hadn't played for three and a half weeks and it wouldn't be good for my knee (to play again in Iran). That was the medical advice I had. Mick Byrne the physio came to my room that Saturday night and I told him it was a little bit sore. Then Sunday morning Alex Ferguson rang me and Mick (McCarthy) was there and I said look the manager (Ferguson) wants me to go back because he classes 2-0 as a good result and Mick said: 'Roy, thanks for coming over, we knew you weren't quite right.' He said that to me. And I said to him at the meeting 'You're a liar' I was still trying to stay calm at this stage but I'm not going to accept that. Not in front of my team-mates and the staff. I will not accept it.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : Will you accept that if there was wrong on his side, then the language you used to him, you were wrong, you went in too hard.
Roy Keane: If I felt for one second I was a little bit out of order then I would apologise and I would go back. I'd love to play in the World Cup. But I am 100% right. And that's not being arrogant or cocky. The last few days, it's been hard, of course it has been. Everyone wants to play in the World Cup but the things that went on in that room, people knew they weren't happy with the conditions; senior players agreed with me. They could have had their say and they just sat there. And I walked out of that room and I walked out on my international career and not one person backed me up, not one.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : Does that not make you suspect that maybe, in the language you used, you were wrong. That's not the kind of language for children to be hearing about. You're a role model.
Roy Keane: It was a private meeting amongst men. These things aren't supposed to go out. That's why I went to Mick's room on the Sunday night and I discussed with it with him. Mick was the one who called it in front of everyone else and said I'd turned my back on the players, that I faked a injury not to go off to Iran when he knew damn well I wasn't right. And he's supposed to be a man-manager. So of course there was going to be language. I wasn't going to say 'excuse me Mick, I think you're a bit out of order'. Of course you're going to use language. I said things to Mick and I'm 100% behind what I said.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : Were you sorry about the way you said it? It's not a sign of weakness to say you're sorry.
Roy Keane: I agree with you. No matter what you do in life you make decisions. Whether it's moving house or moving jobs, getting your haircut, buying a pair of shoes. You might have some doubts, did I do the right thing? But the last few days, there's not one doubt in my mind where I stand, not one doubt and that's good enough for me.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : How about Mick McCarthy. In Ireland there's a view that he's an honest man, that he's a decent man, that as a footballer he was always honest and he always did his best. Do you go along with that view?
Roy Keane: Mick had a decent career and he's done very well. Personally I wouldn't know Mick that well. All I know is the dealings I've had with him and to be fair to Mick he's been very understanding with friendly matches and coming in a couple of days late for certain matches. There's been one or two games where he's let me go home for one or two days when we've had back-to-back matches and he's been very understanding. But all that came to an end the other night.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : But do you respect him. Do you recognise that during the course of his career that when he put his foot in that he was doing his best for Ireland?
Roy Keane: Of course. I grew up watching him playing for Ireland and he did very well playing for Ireland, like a lot of other players.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : And do you think he was doing his best as a manager?
Roy Keane: No. I think he was at fault but that's my opinion and football's all about opinions. That's what makes it a great game; why you get people in the pubs, everywhere you go, it's all about opinions and I accept that. But I'm entitled to my opinion.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : But I'm talking about his integrity and his sincerity in trying to do his best because the view that most Irish people have is that he does his best.
Roy Keane: He probably does do his best.
Tommy Gorman - RTE : Sometimes in life it can be very ironic because it's said that one of the first rows you had with him was when you were a younger man and when he bawled you out of it because you went out late. And do you not see the irony of you crossing swords with McCarthy because some of the younger players were going out at night and some of them might be taking things too lax?
Roy Keane: Players need to go out and enjoy themselves. I had them coming in, six, seven in the morning. It was a great laugh and some of them told me all about it. Good luck to them, I haven't got a problem with that. People say I'm a loner and I lock myself away in my room. I think I'm very approachable. A lot of the Irish lads approach me and talk to me and I'm always willing to give advice. Like I've said, I've had my nights out, but I was getting ready for a World Cup. If that's what they want to do good luck to them. I haven't got a problem with them one bit. There was a barbecue arranged for Monday night with the press. That's not my scene and said this to Mick. There's people in the press I've had my disagreements with over the years and I felt I didn't really want to go, but I went. Mick said to us that he wanted the press on our side but I couldn't understand it. But I went and then I went to bed about nine, 10pm and the lads went out and they had a great night. Good luck to them.
© RTE Television 2002
Soccer-Ireland.Com thanks RTE Television for permission to reproduce this interview here
Continued on Roy Keane RTE Interview 3 : Back to Keane Gorman Interview 1
Back to Saipan Affair Table of Contents - Irish Football
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