Roy Keane to leave too if Martin O'Neill joins Stoke

Alicia Farmer
January 12, 2018

If Stoke do agree a deal with O'Neill, it is expected that Irish assistant manager Roy Keane would join him, as would most of his backroom staff.

"It's like being engaged - you shouldn't be going out with other people".

The former Sunderland boss is reportedly in talks with Stoke City Chairman Peter Coates about the vacant manager's job at the Premier League club.

Former Ireland captain Keane would be tipped to compete for the post, were O'Neill to quit, but the indications are that he's also eager to make a Premier League comeback and could deem this a better route into an eventual managerial post in the UK.

Rowett has since penned a new four-year deal to pledge his future to the Rams and reports claim the Potters hierarchy are keen to bring in the experienced O'Neill.

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Should Keane not leave then Steve Walford, Steve Guppy and Seamus McDonagh are in contention for roles. The contract was agreed in principle, but O'Neill delayed.

A hint of such an embarrassing scenario unfolding was there for all to see when, just five weeks after appearing in an official FAI video confirming the agreement to remain in charge, it had been revised downwards to "I'll need to have a real think about that".

O'Neill had come under for some serious criticism for the facile display against Denmark in the second leg playoff at the Aviva Stadium back in November and that may motivate O'Neill to look to pastures new rather than attempting to guide the Republic of Ireland to the European Championships in 2020.

The FAI insisted that yesterday was no different to any other day, and that O'Neill would be flying to the UEFA Nations League draw later this month as Irish manager.

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