Tuesday 17 July 2018

'Roy's Villa move makes perfect sense'

Roy Keane. Picture: David Maher/SPORTSFILE
Roy Keane. Picture: David Maher/SPORTSFILE

PACKIE BONNER believes that Roy Keane has made the right move by taking on a full-time role at Aston Villa as Paul Lambert's assistant.

Since Keane was unveiled as the Villa No. 2 earlier this week, Irish fans - and players - have been wondering how the 42-year-old will combine his work at Villa with his Ireland duties. But for Bonner, Keane taking the job at Villa makes perfect sense.

"It's interesting and I can see why," Bonner said of Keane's decision to double-job. "I can see why he has taken that role, to get back on the pitch and get involved. From February to June, who many games did they play? One game between November and May, that's incredible so what else do you do as a coach?

"What do you have, eight matches a year? What's his role as assistant manager here now that there are four people involved - Steve Walford, Steve Guppy, Martin O'Neill and Roy? They will all be watching games but how many games do you have to watch, what else do you do to keep yourself involved in the game. I am sure most coaches miss the day-to-day involvement.

"The big question is how will he devote his time to the Irish scene and the club job, will he be able to go to club games at the weekend or during the week, and who is he watching them for? There is enough staff to handle that," added Bonner.

But the former Celtic keeper was not surprised when Keane rejected the chance to move to Parkhead as Neil Lennon's successor.

"I don't think he was getting the conditions that he wanted to make the job happen for him, I don't think Celtic will spend huge money. There's not going to be 30-40 million in the kitty to spend, and there is no guarantee that Rangers will come up, it's odds-on that they will but you never know, you have Hearts and Hibs in that league now," said Bonner.

"Peter Lawell is sitting there thinking why would I spend 30-40 million this year - if Roy demanded it and I am not saying he did - and the conditions were not there for him to take that job. And whether he will be offered it again, who knows."

Bonner is also a fan of new Bhoys boss Ronny Delia. "The new manager is interesting, I met him 6-8 weeks ago, I didn't realise that he could even have been considered for the Celtic job. It's something new, he has to get into the Champions League group stage, it would be an incredible season from the fans' point of view if he doesn't."

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