Republic of Ireland boss Mick McCarthy has congratulated Robbie Keane for his recent appointment as assistant-manager of Middlesbrough.
It was confirmed today that Keane will become a part of Jonathan Woodgate’s backroom staff at the north-east club with Woodgate signing a three-year contract as head coach.
Keane will continue his assistant manager role with the Republic of Ireland as the former striker carves out a career in football management.
“I am thrilled for Robbie as he takes the next step in his path to becoming a top manager,” McCarthy said on the FAI website. “He told me about it the minute he was offered the job and I told him that it was only a runner if he continued with Ireland.
“We are building for the future with this Ireland team and Robbie is a key part of that. He has made a big impression on the players and the staff already as my assistant coach and this new role will only improve him which works for Middlesbrough and, most importantly, for Ireland.”
“This is a great opportunity for me on my pathway to a manager’s job in the future and I am very excited about it.
“I am also grateful to the FAI and to Mick McCarthy for allowing me to take this role and to continue with Ireland. I made it very clear to everyone at Middlesbrough that I would not be coming here if I had to give up my Ireland role and they are happy to agree.
“Ireland means everything to me as it always has done and I look forward now to helping the team in our bid to make the Euro finals and those games in Dublin.”
Middlesbrough narrowly missed out on the playoffs last season which scuppered their chance to gain promotion back to the Premier League.
Ireland’s next competitive fixture is against Switzerland at the Aviva Stadium where they will be looking to build on their promising start to the Euro 2020 qualifying campaign.