Roy Keane is such a winner that even praise from Sir Alex Ferguson has offended him

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What Manchester United would do now for a player like Roy Keane.

The legendary midfielder is arguably the greatest captain the club have ever had.

He led by example on the pitch and raised the standards of every player around him. Nobody could afford to slack off, whether it was in matches or in training, in Keane’s presence. Not even slightly.

Keane was a ferocious midfielder to play against and was regularly involved in scraps and scuffles with opponents. Nobody was capable of intimidating him.

But aside from his fearsome personality, Keane was also a brilliant footballer. He did the simple things well but his passing ability and eye for goal were underrated qualities. He would have got into any team in the world at his peak.

Keane’s scary persona remains the same even now, 13 years after retiring.

He’s had various coaching jobs since then - he currently works as Nottingham Forest’s assistant manager alongside Martin O’Neill - and has also spent time working for the media, although he’s previously admitted that punditry doesn’t give him much of a buzz.

A few years ago he took part in an hour-long programme alongside his old Arsenal rival Patrick Vieira.

Roy Keane

A clip from that show has been doing the rounds on social media today - and it sums up Keane in a nutshell.

The presenter read out a Sir Alex Ferguson quote about Keane’s legendary performance against Juventus in the 1998/99 Champions League semi-finals.

Champs League SF Roy Keane

“Hounding every blade of grass, competing as if he would rather die of exhaustion than lose, he inspired all around him,” Ferguson said. “I felt as if it were an honour to be associated with this player.”

Keane, who was booked against Juve and knew he’d miss the 1999 final as a result, looked disgusted to hear such praise.

“Stuff like that almost kind of insults me,” he responded. “What am I supposed to do? Give up? Not cover every blade of grass? Not do my best for my teammates? Not do my best for my club?

“To be honest I actually get offended when people throw quotes like that at me as if I’m supposed to be honoured by it.

“It’s like praising the postman for delivering your letters. He’s supposed to. It’s his job.

“My job was to try and win football matches for Man United.”

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You’re looking at a true champion right there.

Jesse Lingard and a few others currently at Old Trafford wouldn’t have lasted two minutes in the same dressing room as Keano.

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