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Sunday 4 December 2016

Roy Keane sues bookmaker Paddy Power over Braveheart poster for Ireland vs Scotland match

The Paddy Power Braveheart poster featuring Roy Keane's image
The Paddy Power Braveheart poster featuring Roy Keane's image

Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane is suing bookmakers Paddy Power over the firm using his face on a mocked up image of 'Braveheart'.

A massive billboard featuring Keane as Scottish hero William Wallace - in a still from Oscar-winning film 'Braveheart' - was placed on the side of a 40ft truck and driven around Dublin ahead of Ireland's match against Scotland. It was also driven past the Aviva stadium where the 1-1 match was played on June 13.

The billboard had the following message aimed at Scottish fans: "You may take our points - but at least we have our freedom... (Ya wee pussies)". It's believed to be a reference to the Scottish Independence Referendum which took place in September last year - and saw a majority of Scots vote to stay within the United Kingdom. Some 1.6 million people voted - with 55pc voting to stay within the union.

The 'Irish Daily Star' have reported that the former Manchester United captain has begun proceedings against Paddy Power in the High Court in Dublin and the case is likely to take place early next year.

It's understood he is suing the bookmakers for tens of thousands of euro.

He is represented by A&L Goodbody while the bookmakers have engaged Arthur Cox to represent them. It's understood representatives for Keane lodged High Court papers against the company on Monday.

If Paddy Power loses, it could cost them up to €100,000 if Keane wins and his legal costs are paid.

Spokesperson for the firm Paddy Power said: "Roy Keane has taken legal action against us following his face appearing on our Braveheart billboard ahead of the Ireland-Scotland game.

"It's with the lawyers now so obviously we can't talk about it, but hopefully they won't take our freedom to have a bit of craic," Mr Power added.

The bookmakers are known for their "cheeky" campaigns and publicity stunts.

Ahead of Ireland's game against England, which took place on June 6th, the firm wrapped bubble wrap around one of their shops.

A press release was issued at the time and stated: "Paddy Power have moved to protect their closest shop to the ground by Yob-Proofing the exterior of their Baggot St branch. The extraordinary step has seen the bookmaker cover the entire shop with bubble wrap in hope of avoiding any damage that may come from violent yobs, knobs and hooligans who may infiltrate the Three Lions’ well-meaning travelling support.”

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