Roy Keane talks to us about coaching, punditry and the modern player

Ireland and Manchester United speaks to Off The Ball

Roy Keane, Ireland, coaching,

Assistant manager Roy Keane ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Ireland and Manchester United legend Roy Keane has the challenge of Wales to overcome in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

The Cork man and Ireland assistant manager is helping Martin O'Neill prepare for the crucial March 24th qualifier and is relishing the task as he told Off The Ball.

Keane is enjoying working within the international setup, which doesn't come with some of the type of factors that come with the club scene where agents and other actors are involved.

"You can obviously get frustrated with what's going on outside the game like chief executives, agents etc. But the beauty with the Irish job, at least I can home in and focus on the matches and working with the players on the pitch and not get bogged down by off the field stuff," he said.

"I'm enjoying the role but it doesn't mean to say I wouldn't obviously consider shutting any doors on myself going back to club, but I'm enjoying working with Martin, working with really good players at a good level, so I'm quite fortunate that it ticks a lot of the boxes for where I am at the moment." 

He added that he's enjoying the hands on nature of his current role and feels having experienced management at Sunderland and Ipswich has also been a big benefit in terms of understanding the boundaries of the position.

He also said he is "saddened" when he sees the way club managers routinely lose their jobs in an increasingly ruthless environment.

Keane has been involved in football punditry for a number of years, most notably with ITV, and has described it as "okay" when asked if he enjoys doing TV.

"I'll stick to it for the next few months and see where it takes me," he said.

"My deal with ITV expires in the summer and every summer I take stock and say, 'Do I really want to do it again next year' and again we'll cross that bridge when we get to it."

He also talked about the relentless mentality at Manchester United during his time there and how he adapted his role as younger midfield players emerged in the team who were more attacking minded.

Keane also had his say about the modern players' mentality in dealing with victories, feeling that it is good to soak in the good moments but that one shouldn't go "overboard".

"You see selfies everywhere, swapping jerseys at half time, they're almost enjoying it too much. You have to try, particularly when you're playing for big clubs and in big games, if you get a good result of course enjoy it but move on pretty quickly and get ready for the next battle because this game can beat you up. Enjoy the victories but don't go overboard," said the 45 year old.