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06th Mar 2023

Roy Keane’s silence deafening as Souness lays Gary Neville out with ‘facts’

Niall McIntyre

Roy Keane has been in Gary Neville’s corner before.

Many’s the time when he’s backed him up like an older brother.

How could any of us forget the Highbury tunnel in 2005, when Keane infamously told Patrick Vieira where to go as soon as he went after Gary Neville.

“Patrick Vieira is 6 ft 4. And he was going at Gary Neville. I said come and have a go at me. Simple as that,” Keane said afterwards.

“They think Gary Neville is an easy target but I wasn’t having it,” he added.

Keane wasn’t having it in 2005 but as Neville went off on a Manchester United-based-tangent on Sunday, after Liverpool’s 7-0 trouncing of the Red Devils, his bodyguard of old could only stand and watch.

Tellingly, he didn’t jump into defend him.

Sky Sports Super Sundays are set-up like fanzones these days. Some people love it, and some people hate it.

Sunday was a classic case of this jeery jousting as, after Liverpool’s 7-0 trouncing of Manchester United, Graeme Souness and Jamie Carragher were set-up on one side of Kelly Cates and Gary Neville and Roy Keane were on the other.

Souness and Carragher were always going to be the winners on Sunday, especially with the former having predicted a Liverpool win before the game.

But where Keane was wise to take his medicine, Neville got caught in the headlights in some ways.

He did acknowledge the ineptitude of Erik ten Hag’s side’s performance, to be fair to him, but only before going off on some trivial pursuit about this being out of character for this Manchester United team.

Neville was almost contradicting himself, considering what he’d already said, and Souness smelled blood.

Seeing as they have already lost 6-3 to Man City and 4-0 to Brentford under Erik ten Hag, Neville was fighting something of a losing battle but he kept on digging, and kept on digging.

United had obviously won him over in the last few weeks and months, but they’ve more to do for the likes of Souness and, quite clearly, Keane.

“I watch Manchester United a lot more than you do,” Neville said slightly childishly to Souness.

“It’s a freak. It hasn’t happened for 80, to 100 years,” he added.

“They’ve been embarrassed again today,” retorted Souness.

“It’s a recurring situation for this group of players. What is it you don’t understand about facts?”

As you will see in the clip above, Neville was looking around him for back-up, but he wasn’t getting it. Keane didn’t defend him because, if he had done, well then he would have been the defending the indefensible.

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