Roy Keane did a bit of everything at Manchester United, it seems.
On the pitch, Roy Keane led by example and left Old Trafford as one of the club’s best ever players but he is perhaps best remembered for the culture he cultivated at Alex Ferguson’s United.
So many of his former teammates have spoken at length about Keane’s standards and the outcome that could be expected if they failed to give their all, which was the bare minimum for the Corkman.
One of Keane’s ex-teammates, Wes Brown, has paid tribute to Keane and insisted that the public perception of United’s greatest captain is not quite accurate as it wasn’t all criticism and reproach from him.
“Roy Keane was the man,” Brown said on Off The Ball.
“He was a born winner. When I got there, he had been there for many, many years and he was the captain. He had expectations and he wanted the best out of everyone.
“At the time, United were winning quite a lot and he had the armband so he had to keep that going. It doesn’t matter if you were just brought to the club or were a young lad – you had to do the basics in a football match.
“That’s what Roy Keane does, he focuses on the basics. If I’m not running and he knows I can, he’ll tell me.
“People always take the ‘snaps’ of Roy Keane, but there were so many times that he would compliment you. Coming off at half-time and he would say ‘keep on going, brilliant son…’
“Little things like that that people don’t talk so much about. He was fantastic and he was a role model. He would have taken that from looking at Bryan Robson coming through – I loved it, I thought he was brilliant.”
Added to his usual responsibilities as club captain, Keane took on duties that he wasn’t required to look after.
Brown revealed how Keane took it upon himself to get his second contract at United over the line after Brown asked senior players about the intricacies of the deal.
Brown added: “This was probably my second contract when I was 20, just after the Treble season. I had a word with [Gary Neville] and he said ‘I want Keano to have a look at it.’
“Keano was brilliant and sorted everything out. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t going up to him every day [during negotiations] and go ‘Oi, Keano, what’s happening?!”