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Roy Keane explains why Zinedine Zidane was his toughest opponent

Roy Keane Zidane

“People don’t realise how big he was!”

Roy Keane has revealed that he considers Zinedine Zidane his toughest opponent and pointed to the size difference between the two as he explained just how tricky it was to play against the French legend.

Keane came up against Zidane on several occasions, both at club and international level, and during the latest episode of Micah & Roy’s Road to Wembley, the Irishman was asked to expand on his experiences against Zizou.

Keane admitted that it was tough to play against Zidane and when asked if the Frenchman was his most difficult opponent, Keane was in little doubt.

“Yeah and do you know why? Honestly, still to this day people don’t realise how big he was,” Keane said.

Roy Keane on Zidane

“When I played against him, I’m quite a small guy – I’m 5′ 10” and I’m really slight. People may think maybe I look bigger on the pitch…

“The best thing when I used to play against Zidane – at club level and I played against him for Ireland – the advice I would get from my friends in Ireland would be, ‘just kick him!’ That would be the technical advice.

“I used to say, ‘he’s 6′ 2″. He can deal with that!’ I think he’d been sent off eight or nine times. What he was and what I loved about Zidane was that he was nasty.”

Roy Keane Zidane

After confirming Zidane as his toughest opponent, Keane was quizzed on the best player he’s played with and the former Manchester United captain was less certain on that subject.

Keane eventually settled on Paul Scholes but also reserved honourable mentions for Paul Ince and Paul McGrath.

Roy Keane

“If I had to pick one because I played in midfield with him, Scholesy maybe,” Keane said.

“Paul Ince was a really good player and I obviously played with Paul McGrath for Ireland.”

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