Ploughing through the goldmine that is the Sportsfile archives can be a tiresome task, you go searching for a simple photo of Roy Keane smiling(of which there are surprisingly many) and you come away with a much deeper understanding of Irish training down the years. One such takeaway is the cult of the piggy back, and how it has swept through the ranks of Irish football
It appears to have started in 1996 with Alan McLoughlin giving Happy Roy Keane a rest in training.
Two years later, Roy has trimmed his mop but was as happy as ever as he formed an alternative goalkeeping team with future broadband salesman Discopants Quinn
Gary Doherty had the form in this area, working as a human rickshaw on his J1 in San Diego, Stephen McPhail was always first in the queue as they team left the dressing room.
Despite his small frame Steven Carr was never as happy as he was when ferrying David Connolly back and forth to the team hotel.
It was during this friendly piggy back that Tony's passport found its way into Kelly's pocket..
Jonathan Douglas knew the best way to get over being dropped was to get as close to Joe Murphy as he could
Mick was delighted his revolutionary training method had spread so successfully, he let Stan in on the secret should he ever have to control a team of internationals
Stan brought the spectacle as far as he could by attempting the never before seen three-person piggy back
Niall and David spent hours practicing a new corner routine which they never managed to pull off in a real game.
Roy Keane was happy to be involved in a piggy back, even if it was Gary Breen taking the lift
The cult of the piggyback didn't go unnoticed at League of Ireland level with Dave Hill and Billy Woods introducing it to the Cork City troops
Even Rugby wasn't safe with Ben Gissing being persuaded to try out the zany idea by Big Malcolm.
For anyone with the tiniest bit of insight it was clear that if a piggy back wasn't going to persuade Keano that Saipan wasn't all that bad, nothing would.
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