Keane hits back at Ferguson's attacks

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Roy Keane may have shaved off the scary beard, but it hasn't made the former Manchester United captain any less combative. He reacted swiftly and angrily to the revelations in Sir Alex Ferguson's book.

Ferguson had written that he had to offload Keane to Celtic after the captain launched scathing attacks on team-mates and on Ferguson himself. Reading between the lines, Ferguson seemed most offended that Keane had dared to reproach the manager for getting involved in an unseemly row about the stud fees of the racehorse Rock of Gibraltar.

Keane suggested that Ferguson's comments on United players in the book amounted to a breach of the trust and loyalty that Ferguson had always demanded from his players. "I think I do remember having a conversation with the manager when I was at the club about loyalty," Keane said during ITV's Champions League broadcast. "In my opinion I don't think he knows the meaning of the word."

Ferguson's book had suggested that Keane's own form was deteriorating and implied that Keane did not have the patience to make a success of a career in management. "It doesn't bother me too much what he has to say about me," Keane said, "but to constantly criticise other players at the club who brought him a lot of success, I find very, very strange. I just don't think the manager needs to do that."

It is Ferguson's second book about his career, and there may be more revelations to come. "He has to draw the line eventually to say: 'Listen, these players have all been top servants to Man United.'" Keane argued. "A lot of these players helped the manager win lots of trophies, so imagine if we never won a trophy what he would have said. We brought success to the club, we gave it everything we had when we were there. It's just part of modern life now that people like to do books and criticise their ex-players."

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