Leeds Legend Alfi Haaland Trolls Beardy Coward Keane – by Rob Atkinson

Roy                        -                         Saddam

Roy <—————————————————> Saddam

Nineties Leeds cult hero Alf-Inge Haaland has reignited the decades-long feud between himself and former Man U bully-boy Roy Keane, with a mischievous tweet (above) comparing Royston to the late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Alf tweeted the provocative image, along with the message “can’t take a man seriously when he’s got a beard like….” Keane had earlier revisited the issue of his cowardly attack on Haaland during a Manchester derby, confusingly claiming that he never meant to injure Haaland, but had meant to hurt him. Eh?

Perhaps this self-contradiction is an insight into what goes on inside Keane’s head, which seems muddled and somewhat paranoid at the best of times. The media, as we know, are determined to portray the former Pride of Devon midfielder as the ultimate hardman, never missing an opportunity to speak in hushed tones of awe about his trademark glower and supposed talent for fisticuffs. The rest of us know, of course, that Keane’s scowl masks a coward, someone who will exact his revenge after an extended period of sulky brooding, but not face to face, preferring the over the ball tackle, as with Haaland, or sneaking up from behind to plant a crafty elbow in an opponent’s face, as he did with the not-exactly-scary Jason McAteer.

One can only wonder at Keane’s motivation for growing such a horrible dead badger of a beard – was it to reinforce his own persistent delusion that he’s somehow impressive and the type to strike terror into brave men’s hearts? Or could it have been, perhaps, to deflect the unwelcome attentions of ITV anchor Adrian Chiles, whose breathless admiration for Roy always appears to be about to cross that blurred line into unrequited love? That is one unilateral bromance which makes for particularly queasy viewing.

In his latest self-justifying whinge, Keane mentions a short list of people who were always on his mind as targets to hit “if I got the chance” – Batty, Shearer and Vieira among them. The phrase “In your dreams, Royston” springs readily to mind. And, significantly, there’s a whole world of sneaky cowardice about just those last five words, “if I got the chance“. This is not the attitude of an up and at ’em loveable nutcase like Vinnie Jones, or anyone of several of the Revie boys who weren’t shy about landing a good old-fashioned left-hook when the occasion demanded (Johnny Giles, come on down…) Keane’s modus operandi was to bide his time, wait until he could strike – and then move away, probably towards the dressing room and safety, after a rare Man U red card.

The origins of Keane’s spat with Haaland are illuminating in themselves. Keane had been pursuing a Leeds opponent at Elland Road, intent on fouling him (characteristically from behind) – and had mistimed it horribly, over-stretching and rupturing a cruciate ligament, as karma paid him a brief and devastating visit. Haaland, reasonably assuming the Man U player was faking injury to avoid a caution, was bent over the fallen Keane to communicate this point of view. Keane never forgot or forgave – despite the fact that he was the author of his own misfortune – and waited, as a coward will, for the safest opportunity to get some payback.

It’s instructive also to recall that Keane could be termed a traitor to his country, allowing his own small concerns to spark an attack of paranoia and cause him to flounce out of the Irish squad for the Japanese World Cup. Again, Roy being Roy, he could see no possible grounds for any criticism of his own actions. An immeasurably greater midfielder than Keane, Billy Bremner, used to hold as a maxim “Side Before Self, Every Time”. This kind of team spirit is not to be found in Keane’s lexicon; his mindset is best illustrated by reversing Billy’s motto. For Roy, Roy matters before all else and Roy is always right. It’s a shame he’s usually surrounded by brainless sycophants who encourage him in this sad delusion.

At the end of the day, all Leeds fans and many other less fortunate football lovers will see clearly that Haaland has emerged from this whole saga with infinitely more credit than the ridiculous Keane. The humour at the core of his “Beard” tweet is a concept alien to poor old Roy, who really does take himself far too seriously. In retrospect, he’d have been better off remaining under the guidance of Brian Clough, who was the type of boss to batter such petulant nonsense out of a young and bumptious footballer. The Theatre of Hollow Myths, with its track record of promoting and nurturing the kind of empty-headed arrogance typified by Keane, Rooney, Cantona and too many others, was the very last place to bring out the best in the volatile but less-than-tough Irishman.

It’s a tragedy in its way. Much as is the case – and thanks, Alf, for pointing this out so wittily – with that bloody awful beard…

23 responses to “Leeds Legend Alfi Haaland Trolls Beardy Coward Keane – by Rob Atkinson

  1. and lets not forget his prima donna performance at the world cup where he embarrassed himself but more importantly he embarrassed his country, all because he didn’t like the then manager mick “terror hawk” mc , who has it happens has turned out to be a far better manager than Royston Hussain ever has or will be…


  2. Mersey-White

    Keane had his chance with shearer, until he saw that he looked pretty bemused and wouldn’t back down, at which point Keane skulks away effing and blinding. My money was on shearer.

    Wish there was still footage of him going in hard on city keeper Eike Immel who leapt up and grabbed him round the throat, the look of terror on keanes face was priceless


  3. Giles would have chewed ‘Keano’ up and spat him out. Pride of Devon sycophant Darren ‘Fletch’ Fletcher and his meeja buddies chuckling and chortling over Keane’s determination to injure a fellow pro sickening on FiveLive last night. But then normal rules of objectivity do not apply to the BBC’s faves – grovelling indulgence is the default setting.


  4. Catchline of Match of the Day, 98.6% of days when Pride of Basingstoke are at home: ‘But first to Old Trafford…’


  5. batts always had the better of him

    least convincing “hard man” in football


  6. Unfortunately for alfie, this is the most comedy comment by an ex player this week


    Welcome to a traditional yorkshire greeting of bricks and cricket bats I think.


  7. Rob Thorne

    Spot on once again Rob, this cretin of a human is a little coward, I still cannot believe to today the pathetic ban and fine placed on this thug after the damage he did to Alfie, it must be because he considers players pieces of meat, which is maybe why he tried to chop Alfie in half. I can think of many a player who where proper hard men, he did what he did and ran off the pitch, real hard that! Me thinks messers Mackay, Smith, Giles, Storey, Jordan and King Billy would be laughing their heads off at the so called Hard man image of Keane. He is a self opinionated, deluded thug. I would be happy to tell him so, to his face.


  8. Kisnorbo reckons keen-no would be welcome at Leeds anytime.

    Forgive and forget, thats what I say, just like we did with masterbates that other prize wanker… oh hang on we don’t forget do we.. err… or forgive.. forget I said that.. Doh! we don’t forget..

    Moving on, Actually I think that beard suits him, now he looks AND sounds like a…


  9. Well done Rob !! You have hit the nail on the head with this one….Roy Keane is nothing but a pantomime villain built up by the press….hard man my arse !! Jesus that fat bastard Neil Razor Ruddock put more fear into players than Roy Keane. Real hard men of football go about their business quietly (David Batty)….they don’t walk around with their chest pushed out and snarl at every opportunity…..they do a ‘job’ on someone and then move on…..and they don’t glorify it in the media.
    Marching on together from NZ


    • Cheers Jon, wishing you a good summer! MOT


      • Cheers Rob…..and wishing you a pleasant winter and Leeds a promotion winning season! Honestly, this has a feeling of 1990 written all over it!! Bellusci giving his shirt to a disabled fan (Vinny), the influx of new players, the style of football we are playing….Christ while I’m at it, Antennuci even reminds me of Bobby Davison in his prime !! Come on Leeds, when we click someone is getting a proper hiding !!


  10. There was a rumour doing the rounds in the weeks that followed a “spat” between Shearer and Keane on the far touchline, that resulted in hardman Keane getting red carded for throwing a ball at Big Al after an argument about a throw in. Apparently Keane was in the tunnel waiting for Shearer to walk down after the game had finished and was going to sort him out good and proper until he was told from members of the Newcastle coaching staff what Shearer does to little upstarts who provoke him into one to one straightners and the likely result if it indeed occured- needless to say he didn’t wait there for much longer- shame as I would loved to have read about Big Al kicking him all over St James’ Park- it wouldn’t have been the first time the “pride of Devon” had been booted all over by the Geordies when venturing up north looking for bovver!!


  11. Mark benson

    So the bearded big head wanted batts? What stopped him? Oh yeah I forgot, batts would have wiped the floor with him. Jesus, even Norman hunter could have him crying if they met tomorrow. If Royston s hard I’m the incredible hulk! Soft scum twat.


  12. As they say here in Oz, that beardy picture is “like a poofter looking through a hedge”.


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