Hyder Jawad is not convinced Midland clubs should join the chase...
Roy Keane was the finest midfield player of his generation but, alas, it has not been his generation for about five years. At last, even Sir Alex Ferguson has realised this, and cast Keane out of Manchester United and, perhaps, into oblivion.
Most clubs would want to sign Keane, but whether this is because he was a great player, or as a publicity stunt, is open to debate.
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Whatever, contrary to reports, there is no chance that he will join West Bromwich Albion. It is unlikely that Albion could afford him and even more unlikely that he would be good enough.
Who in the right mind would pay so much money (perhaps £40,000 a week) to sign somebody who is one tackle away from being a cripple and whose mouth works quicker than his brain?
Keane comes with baggage. He rarely smiles, has little regard for the ordinary man on the street (i.e., most of us), boasts no skills of diplomacy, and no longer has that ability to dictate the pace of matches.
The Keane we all want to remember is the one who single-handedly won the FA Cup for Manchester United against Liverpool at Wembley in 1996. But that was nearly a decade ago. That was before Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard.
It is likely that Keane will join Celtic. He grew up supporting the Glasgow club and has never missed an opportunity to reveal these affections.
But Celtic would either have to break the bank or convince Keane to take a significant wage cut. He earned about £95,000 a week with United and, reportedly, has received a £1.5 million severance deal.
That would certainly encourage him to reduce his wage expectations but there will be somebody - a club clearly lacking foresight - who will offer Keane upwards of £30,000 a week.
Take a look at those clubs in trouble. They are the ones who are favourites to land Keane. Everton, back in the bottom three after losing 4-0 away to Albion, are in good financial shape after making £ 30 million profit on Wayne Rooney. Keane would certainly boost ticket sales if not necessarily the Everton first-team squad.
But what of Birmingham City? Second-to-bottom in the Premiership, lacking charisma, and facing their biggest crisis in a generation. Could they turn to Keane in the hope that the Irishman will answer their problems?
Steve Bruce, the Birmingham manager, played with Keane for Manchester United in the earlytomid 1990s and there is some affection there. And Bruce has always shown a desire to sign the best players possible.
But Keane is a great player in terms of reputation and no longer in terms of what he does on the pitch.
Birmingham and any other club should steer well clear.