A typically blunt opinion from Roy Keane after Ireland lost to Finland.
With another international window coming to a close, as usual, Roy Keane was in the ITV studios to provide analysis on England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, and Ireland’s defeat to Finland.
After offering his opinions on Harry Maguire’s poor performance against Denmark and the clamour for Jack Grealish to play more by England fans, Roy Keane turned his attention to Ireland’s 1-0 defeat by Finland.
Just like his analysis in the aftermath of the playoff defeat to Slovakia, the former Manchester United midfielder bemoaned a lack of goalscoring quality in the side and criticised Ireland’s ability to finish chances.
“They’ve had chances but we keep saying it over and over again – and it’s not just going on the last number of games but over the last number of years – scoring goals has been very, very difficult for Ireland. They’re creating chances but as you said, they’ve only got one goal in the last five games and that’s from a setpiece. That puts you under huge pressure. But, what they’ve got to do is try and find a way of getting a result,” said the former Ireland midfielder.
When asked by host Mark Pougatch to analyse Fredrik Jensen’s winning goal, Keane was blunt and direct.
“Whatever the manager’s philosophy is – maybe he wants to play out from the back – but here with Ireland, this goal comes down to decision making by the players. Listen, they’re away from home and under pressure, just relax. You’ve got an experienced ‘keeper in Randolph, this is a bad decision and even worse execution. Straight away, why a player would do that?!,” he said.
Later in the conversation, Roy Keane provides a theory as to why Ireland’s ‘keeper made the uncharacteristic error against Finland.
“The decision making from an experienced goalkeeper is crazy…crazy. Look at the players’ body language. Credit to Pukki, he’s alive to it and he spots it, and they get punished for it. But it’s self-inflicted. You know, Darren is experienced but he doesn’t play week-in, week-out, he’s a Number 2, and sometimes that sharpness is not there and that also goes back to your decision making,” said Keane.
After the game, the West Ham ‘keeper took to Instagram to apologise for his mistake.
“Not the way we wanted to end this round of games. And not how I wanted my 47th cap to go. The lads were brilliant after what’s been a turbulent trip, to say the least, and didn’t deserve to lose. I hold my hands up and apologise for my part in tonight’s defeat. But lots of positives in how we’re playing and some very bright youngsters coming through. Thanks for your support and messages,” he said.