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Keane reveals head-butting Peter Schmeichel during pre-season tour

The then Manchester United stars woke up Bobby Charlton before Alex Ferguson stepped in to stop the fight back in 1998.

Keane and (left) Schmeichel back in 1995.
Keane and (left) Schmeichel back in 1995.
Image: PA Archive/Press Association Images

ROY KEANE HAS recalled a bust-up with former team-mate Peter Schmeichel during their playing days at Manchester United.

While on a pre-season tour of Asia back in 1998, two of Alex Ferguson’s greatest ever signings clashed in the team hotel after a night of drinking — forcing the United boss to step in and break the fight up.

In his soon-to-be released autobiography The Second Half, as seen by The Daily Mirror, the Ireland assistant manager explains how the pair came to blows.

“I had a bust-up with Peter when we were on a pre-season tour of Asia, in 1998, just after I came back from my cruciate injury. I think we were in Hong Kong. There was drink involved.

“There’d been a little bit of tension between us over the years, for football reasons. Peter would come out shouting at players, and I felt sometimes he was playing up to the crowd: ‘Look at me!’

“He was probably doing it for concentration levels, but I felt he did it too often, as if he was telling the crowd: ‘Look what I have to deal with’.

“He said: ‘I’ve had enough of you, It’s time we sorted this out.’ So I said ‘Okay’ and we had a fight. It felt like 10 minutes. There was a lot of noise – Peter’s a big lad.

Peter had grabbed me, I’d head-butted him – we’d been fighting for ages.

“He (Ferguson) told us that we were a disgrace to the club, and that we’d woken Bobby Charlton up, that Bobby had come out of his room and seen us.

“Peter took responsibility for the fight, which was good. I admired him for it. But Sir Bobby could have tried to break it up.”

The Second Half hits shelves in Ireland this Thursday, 9 October

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Ben Blake

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