Out in the desert, I can safely declare that I haven’t the foggiest idea of whether there was a grain of truth in the speculation that Roy Keane had walked out.
In fact, it is quite a relief to have missed all the original rumours/reports and seen only the stories saying it is nonsense.
The Salut! Sunderland view is that Keano’s departure could rock our boat in alarming fashion. We have made a disappointing start to the season, but everyone seems to recognise that we have been playing some decent football that would, with luck, have brought a few more points.
Keano was given money to spend, spent it and is entitled to a longer spell before he is judged on those purchases and his leadership of the team. Football fans always argue about the merits of players, and it would be odd if most of us did not wonder aloud about one or more of the signings.
We are not quite halfway through November. Tomorrow’s game at Blackburn is an important one, and another defeat would certainly inflict huge damage on supporters’ morale. But it is a good time to get behind the Lads and, for as long as he is manager, support Keano.
If I turn out to have been laughably kind to club or manager (the rumours, after all, are still flying around tonight on the chatrooms and in text messages – and include one suggesting the unthinkable: Keano bound for St James’ Park), then there will be a distinct change of heart…
This is how our friends at the Irish website eleven-a-side have reported the day’s events:
Widespread rumours suggesting Roy Keane had parted company with Sunderland on Friday afternoon are unfounded, according to a Wearside media report.
Speculation that Keane’s two-year stay on Wearside had come to an end spread like wildfire through online fan forums after lunchtime this afternoon.
The rumours appeared to gather pace when Setanta and Sky Sports suggested that Keane had not travelled with the squad for Saturday’s Premier League encounter with Blackburn Rovers.
But the Sunderland Echo has declared that there is no foundation to the rumours, and that Keane DID accompany the squad on its journey to Lancashire today.
Sunderland have lost four games on the trot, including Wednesday night’s Carling Cup encounter with Blackburn, and currently sit second from bottom of the Premier League table.