Roy Keane's temperament and unrelenting desire to win saw him involved in a number of 'disagreements' with players on the opposing team during his trophy-laden playing career, but few were as explosive as the time he and Alan Shearer exchanged a difference of opinion.
At St.James' Park in 2001, Shearer got under Keane's skin to the point where the Man United captain took a swing at his head and for which he received a red card.
Keane then had to be held back as he refused to leave the pitch such was his desire to actually connect with Shearer, but even when he was removed there was
no calming down the enraged Corkman.
Alan Shearer confirmed while discussing the incident on The True Geordie Podcast, where he revealed that Keane was waiting for him in the tunnel after the game before jokingly claiming that he would have knocked the Man Utd captain out.
You had to look after yourself, definitely. I always gave as good as I got, I was hard, most of the time I was fair. Neil Lennon deserved it, he was stupid for heading my foot - Nah, I just kicked out, didn't mean to kick him in the head and I panicked when I saw it.
I think I did an FA Cup game with Roy Keane [after becoming a pundit] - we got on fine, had a laugh and a joke - he's another one who I had some great battles with. He punched me in the face once, didn't he? At St.James' Park.
He got that red card - it was funny - he walked off the pitch, it was the last minute of the game and he'd been given the red card, and he was waiting for me at the top of the tunnel. Of course we tried to get each other and we couldn't, it was like hold me back/don't hold me back but we couldn't get to each other, it would have been interesting.
The host of the show, The True Geordie, then expressed his personal view that Shearer would have knocked Roy Keane out, to which the legendary striker replied:
Of course I would have.
We're not so sure. Keane was a boxer as a young lad, and he was very, very angry on that particular day, at the peak of his physical fitness too... Keane by KO for us.
You can watch Shearer's chat with The True Geordie in full below, he discusses his run in with Keane from around 1:21:30.