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Martin O'Neill Refutes Suggestions That Roy Keane Has Been An Unwanted Distraction

Martin O'Neill Refutes Suggestions That Roy Keane Has Been An Unwanted Distraction
By Gary Reilly Updated

Following Roy Keane's tense press conference yesterday, today it was Martin O'Neill's turn to take questions ahead of Tuesday's friendly against the USA and unsurprisingly, there was only one topic on the agenda.

When asked for his thoughts on Keane's comments regarding Everton's treatment of James McCarthy and Seamus Coleman, as well as his comments about Jack Grealish, O'Neill told the assembled media that he hadn't read what his assistant manager had to say. However, he was forthcoming in his opinion that Keane is an asset to the Irish team as opposed to a distraction as many have claimed.

Every single time you mention Roy, it either seems to be a distraction or another issue. Let me tell you straight: I'm delighted to have him.

I chose in the first place to bring him in here, he's been terrific, he's really been terrific. He has been terrific around the lads, he has been great. He has been everything that I wanted him to be.

All the distractions - some things have materialised that actually aren't of his doing to begin with, so I haven't a problem.

However, when he was pressed on the Everton issue, O'Neill admitted that he would be looking to speak to Roberto Martinez regarding Keane's comments.

I think I will (speak to Martinez). I may get a chance to go down and find out exactly what was said on both sides and take a view.

[Irish Examiner]

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