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Irish international Richard Keogh 'in a really bad way' since Derby County sacking

The experienced defender had his contract terminated a month after being seriously injured in a car crash.

Keogh could be out for as long as 15 months.
Keogh could be out for as long as 15 months.
Image: Bradley Collyer

RICHARD KEOGH’S AGENT has opened up about the anguish the defender has been going through over the past six weeks. 

On 24 September, the 33-year-old suffered injuries to his knee as passenger in a car, which his Derby County team-mate crashed into a lamppost. 

Last week, Keogh had his contract terminated by the Championship side — leaving him without a club as he faces into a long road to recovery. 

After undergoing knee surgery, he is expected to be out of action for as long as 15 months. 

Agent Cos Toffis, who represents the Ireland international, says he has taken the sacking extremely hard. 

“Richard is in a really bad way currently, it’s heartbreaking,” Keogh’s agent told Jim White on talkSPORT today. 

“I don’t think I could possibly put into words how much he’s hurting and what his family are going through. Richard’s world has been absolutely rocked. I’m here to support and help him get through this.

“The most difficult days are probably match days. It has been really difficult to get through the matches that have been played since the incident and since the sacking. 

“Yesterday, while the game was on, Richard went to look at St George’s [Park] because he’ll possibly be doing the remainder of his rehabilitation there.” 

While Toffis explained that he couldn’t go into specific details in relation to the events of 24 September or the offer of a reduced salary Derby allegedly put on the table, he expressed his surprise at the decision to cut their ties with the long-serving centre-half. 

Meanwhile, team-mates Tom Lawrence and Mason Bennett, who avoided jail after being arrested for drink-driving on the night, remain Derby players. 

I was absolutely shocked,” he added. “It was something we were paranoid about but at no point did we think it was going to happen. Richard has played 356 games for the football club and whenever a player dedicates himself to a club the way he has, you become part of that family. 

“He will be Derby County family for the rest of his life. There won’t be many players that will play that many games for that particular club. It was a devastating blow for us all and it’s a decision I wish they hadn’t taken. 

“He’s bled in that shirt, he’s fought in that shirt, he’s cried in that shirt. We’ve all seen him do that so to be kicked to the curb is a really bitter pill to swallow.” 

There are real doubts about whether a player of Keogh’s age can make a comeback from such serious injuries, especially without the support of a club.

Asked if he will play again, Toffis replied: “One million per cent. He is the most determined character I’ve ever come across in my life. Everyone who has met him will back that up, and if there’s one thing he will do again it’s play.

“He’s ahead of schedule, so that’s the one bit of good news we’ve had over this last week. 12-13 months from now he’ll be putting his boots back on, getting back out there and doing his stuff.”

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Ben Blake

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