What was said to spark clash between Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira in 2005


Channel 5 seriously pulled it out the bag with their documentary 'Fergie vs Wenger: The Feud' on Monday night.

In the aftermath of Arsene Wenger confirming he will leave Arsenal in the summer, the documentary examined his heated rivalry with Sir Alex Ferguson during those early years.

Between 1996 and 2006, the tension and competitiveness between Manchester United and Arsenal was unparalleled.

The filmmakers drafted in the likes of Paul Scholes, Phil Neville, Sol Campbell, Martin Keown and former Premier League referee Graham Poll to reminisce on that era.

It made for extremely entertaining viewing, with the former players discussing conversations from training, the dressing room and in the immediate aftermath of title wins.

Infamous tunnel incident of 2005

Amidst all the brilliant stories, however, the topic eventually concerned that of the infamous tunnel incident of 2005.

The clip of Roy Keane barking 'he's not being a very nice guy' in regards to Patrick Vieira in the narrow Highbury tunnel is one of the most famous off-the-pitch moments in Premier League history.

Exactly what went on before that moment has been less discussed, though.

Roy Keane

What was said before the clash

During an interview with Soccer AM last year, Gary Neville explained that it was his constant heavy tackles on Jose Antonio Reyes earlier in the season that had sparked the debate.

However, the new documentary has opened up on the fracas to an even greater extent and a combination of the players present have opened up on what was said before the fall-out.

Take a look at the transcript below:

Graham Poll: "I walked past the old Highbury ground, I passed the away dressing room on the right, and Fergie was standing outside. And he just said to me: 'Good luck,' and you just think 'oh no.'"

Paul Scholes: "Vieira said something to Gary Neville in the warm-up, which was crazy really. You know, a warm-up, who's even thinking about talking to another player?"

Phil Neville: "Gary came in the dressing room and told everyone and I didn't know that Roy Keane was actually listening. Roy was doing his boots and having his drink.

"And Gary, being Gary, was saying: 'Vieira said this, Vieira said that, he said he's going to do this to me, he said he's going to do that to me!'"

Poll: "I'd just reminded Vieira that the last time we'd been together with Roy Keane the previous season, we'd made Roy laugh in the tunnel. So, I said: 'let's see if we can do that again tonight.'

"And he just went: 'Not tonight, Graham.'"

Scholes: "Roy felt that Patrick was trying to bully him. I don't think any of us could be bullied."


Almost chilling from Vieira and what followed is forever captured on Sky Sports cameras.

Poll was eventually able to calm things down in the tunnel but, in the opinion of many, Arsenal had already lost the game before they stepped out to play.

United would eventually go onto win 4-2 with goals from Ryan Giggs, John O'Shea and a brace from Cristiano Ronaldo.

Who do you think was the better leader - Keane or Vieira? Have your say in the comments section below.

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