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Dublin: 6 °C Sunday 23 February, 2020

Roy Keane steps down as assistant at Aston Villa to focus on Ireland

“It isn’t fair to either Villa or Ireland,” says Keane.

Image: PA Wire/Press Association Images

IRELAND ASSISTANT MANAGER Roy Keane has resigned from his parallel role as assistant at Premier League club Aston Villa.

The Corkman stepped in to support Paul Lambert in July, but his tenure has lasted only 151 days.

In the statement released today, Keane said that performing roles with both club and country had become too much to sustain.

“Ultimately, my roles with Villa and Ireland, and combining my commitment to these, has become too much,” said Keane.

“It isn’t fair to either Villa or Ireland, so I’ve made this decision.

“I’d like to thank Paul for giving me a great opportunity to come to a brilliant football club.

“I’ve really enjoyed my experiences at Villa and I wish the management team, the players, the supporters and the club nothing but the best going forward.”

Keane has no concrete commitments with the national team until late March, so on first viewing his exit from the Birmingham club seems to be oddly timed. However, a club spokesman this morning said that Keane had been struggling to find time to spend with his family and that has contributed to the decision, the BBC report.


Manager Paul Lambert praised Keane for his contribution to the club and says he respects the decision to leave:

“Roy came to me this morning and he informed me that, ultimately, the difficulty of combining both roles has prompted his decision, which I respect totally.

“In the brief period we have worked together he has been great in the role and I understand his reasons for leaving.”

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Sean Farrell

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