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Wednesday 1 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Martin Rickett/PA Archive/Press Association Images "Galaxy, eh? Don't mind if I do."
# American Dream
A galaxy far, far away: the ins and outs of Robbie's 'dream' move Stateside
Ian Walsh takes a look at what the move will mean for Robbie, for the LA Galaxy and for the Republic of Ireland.

ROBBIE KEANE DOESN’T do himself any favours.

Firstly, on his move to Liverpool in 2008 he said: “I’ve been a massive Liverpool fan since I was a kid. This is a dream come true.” But the dream soon turned into a nightmare after he was transferred back to Tottenham within months.

Keane found himself on the sidelines at White Hart Lane and in February 2010 was loaned to Celtic, describing the move, Keane said: “I always wanted to play for Celtic. I’m happy to be here and I can’t wait to get the jersey on for real.”

‘A dream come true’

Yesterday, the Republic of Ireland skipper was confirmed as an LA Galaxy player on a two year deal, for a reported fee of £3.5m. Another club, and another ‘dream come true’ for the boy from Tallaght:

I have always wanted to come and play in MLS so it’s the perfect combination for me and a dream come true.

Keane will join LA Galaxy as a “designated player”, alongside David Beckham and Landon Donovan, thus pushing Juan Pablo Angel out of the club (one of Galaxy’s three allowed designated players) to make room.

Who else was interested?

There were suggestions that Leicester and Blackburn have been interested in the former Tottenham striker, but Keane has chosen to go Stateside.

With the MLS season in full swing (25 out of the 34 weeks completed) Keane will almost certainly be edging for a loan move to the Premier League or elsewhere during the close season — a la David Beckham (AC Milan) and Landon Donovan (Bayern Munich and Everton)

Will this move to LA Galaxy affect Keane’s international career?

The short answer to this would be — no.

Keane has given some of his best performances in a green shirt while not regularly playing for a club side.

There is arguably a huge contrast between the careers of David Beckham and Robbie Keane, in that Beckham, at 36 still harbours dreams of playing for England again. On the other hand, Keane, 31, is still the talismanic captain of Ireland as well as being the record goal scorer and third highest cap holder with 51 goals in 109 appearances.

What will the boss say?

Giovanni Trapattoni has always made it clear during his tenure that he wants his players to be playing regularly, which is why in the past he urged Keane to make a decision about his future.

In late January Trapattoni said:

I said ‘Robbie, go.’ It’s important to play. It’s not important [if it’s the] second league, first league, Champions League.

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The only issue about Keane’s move to Los Angeles will be the 11hours flight journey back to Ireland.

How will Keane fare at Galaxy?

Currently, the club is top of the Western Conference — as well as being top of the overall standings with 48 points from 25 games and with nine games remaining in the season.

Landon Donovan is top scorer with 11 goals in 17 appearances.

With Keane’s proven track record at finding the back of the net, he could well be what Galaxy need as he replaces Juan Pablo Angel who has only scored three goals in the MLS this season.

You can read more of Ian Walsh’s work at his blog, Touchline Views, or contact him on Twitter at @walsh_i.

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