2022 – another 12 months full of pure box office Roy Keane moments.
The tough-tackling, hard-hitting pundit never fails to steal the show whenever he appears on our screens with the former Manchester United and Republic of Ireland star continuing to encapsulate viewers whenever he opens his mouth.
We’ve seen foul-mouthed tirades about United during their depths to new lows during the 2021-22 Premier League season, arguments with a whole nation following their dance moves and a flirtation with a return to management – while the relaxed and wittier side of Keane has been on display at times too.
Roy Keane continued to entertain us during 2022 and Sportsmail picks out his top 10 moments
He’s managed to offend coaches, players, pundits and fans across the world but we can never get enough of his abrasive but entertaining style.
In light of another year of several Keane masterpieces, Sportsmail has counted down the 51-year-old’s top 10 best and worst moments from the year.
10 – He’s still got it
On a rare day off during the World Cup, Keane dusted off the cobwebs to take part in a friendly match between the BBC and ITV.
And he demonstrated he still had all the skills as he powered the winning goal past Keane’s partner in crime in the Sky Sports studio, Micah Richards.
Keane then wheeled away and ripped off his shirt, flailing it above his head before he jumped over a wheelie bin and was mobbed by teammates in some iconic scenes.
He demonstrated his sense of humour with the celebration coming just days after Keane had slammed the Brazil side for their extravagant dancing after each goal during their thumping win against South Korea.
Roy Keane scored the winning goal in a friendly match between ITV and the BBC in Qatar
Keane then proceeded to celebrate madly, as he ripped off his T-shirt after scoring
The pundit whirled his shirt around his head after his delight at netting in the friendly game
Keane’s celebrated by running off before jumping over a nearby wheelie-bin
9 – A flirtation with a return to the dugout
‘I don’t throw tea-cups, that’s not my style. I think I’d rather throw punches,’ Keane once said during an unsuccessful two-year stint in charge of Ipswich Town between 2009-2011 – a job that remains his last in the managerial hotseat.
So when the Irishman was pencilled in as favourite to take over at Sunderland for a second time in February, interest piqued – with onlookers intrigued at how an infamously abrasive and volatile character might have dealt with League One referees, pitches and facilities.
However, the hopes of Keane starring front and central in a new series of Sunderland ‘Til I Die perished when he rejected the role, with the club citing contractual difficulties.
At the age of 51, there’s still time Roy… we’d love to see some more fireworks in the dugout.
Roy Keane flirted with a return to management, before opting to stay put in his role as a pundit
8 – Jetting home to escape colleagues
Keane continue to enrich our World Cup experience through his work as a pundit on ITV, but there was confusion when he failed to appear on our screens for a few days.
It turns out the Irishman popped back home to get away from his fellow pundits – perhaps he was still angry with Graeme Souness after their infamous rant earlier in the tournament (more on that later).
Keane confided to Gary Neville and Micah Richards in a World Cup catch-up for Sky Bet: ‘I had a break. I needed a break, just my tolerance levels. Yeah, people get on my nerves.’
Keane revealed he briefly came home from Qatar due to colleagues ‘getting on his nerves’
7 – The Juan Mata/Phil Jones testimonial
As Manchester United plunged to new depths last season, we became used to Keane’s rants and the Irishman was irked by United’s tactics during a 1-1 draw with Chelsea in April.
‘Mata’s come on again,’ a bemused Keane said. ‘You’ve got some young kids on the bench. It’s like a tribute to Mata I thought it was a testimonial tonight.
‘You’re Man United. It’s all like “we’ll give him a game, we’ll get Jones on, everyone gets a round of applause forget all this we’ll give someone 20 mins he’s leaving in a few weeks” – in fact, you should’ve left two years ago.’
What did Juan and Phil ever to do you Roy – mind you, maybe Keane could appear in Jones’s testimonial with the defender qualifying for one after spending 11 years at Old Trafford.
A bemused Keane described Man United acting as if their game with Chelsea was a testimonial
6 – A night out with Jack Grealish
Jack Grealish is a larger-than-life character and after celebrating Man City’s title win last season, the jubilant midfielder tried to convince Keane to join the celebrations with him in the evening alongside Micah Richards.
The Irishman smirked, before responding with ‘I’m driving’, leaving Grealish and his fellow pundits in fits of laughter, with Keane also passing on some words of advice as he said: ‘Keep off the top shelf. Stick with beer,’ before congratulating him on his achievement.
We never found out if the Irishman joined them but a night out with Keane, Richards and Grealish – who wouldn’t want to be a fly on the wall for that one.
Jack Grealish tried to convince Keane to join him on a night out after Man City’s title triumph
5 – A new look for the World Cup final
With the world’s eyes firmly on football’s showpiece event and who would come out on top between two greats of the game in Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe, Keane still managed to steal the show during the build-up – such is his iconic nature.
As viewers tuned in for ITV’s coverage of the final, they were greeted with a moustache Keane was sporting, with fans being quick to hail his extravagant new look.
In fact, many remarked Keane’s moustache had given the channel the edge over BBC – who were also broadcasting the World Cup final. Never change, Roy!
Keane debuted a new, extravagant-looking moustache on ITV ahead of the World Cup final
4 – Tirade against Manchester United
You can never fault Keane’s passion for his former club – with their disastrous season last year clearly hurting him dearly – but one particular 4-0 defeat to Liverpool had the Irishman going ‘full Keane’.
He fumed: ‘Rashford’s performance up front… Jesse Lingard’s come on to try and save Man United. Jesse Lingard should’ve left two years ago – he’s not good enough for Man United.
‘Rashford played like a child up-front,’ before he continued… ‘this team’s not even likeable – there’s no soul – you don’t even warm to them.’
Pure, unadulterated Keane in full flow… there’s nothing quite like it.
3 – Bank card declined in Qatar
Whenever you go abroad, the key is always making sure you have the right currency and enough money to get you through your trip – but Keane made a big mistake in Qatar.
He revealed to fellow pundits Neville and Richards how his card had been declined twice when he had tried to buy some food for himself and Neville, after setting himself a limit of £50 a day spending money.
‘I never thought I would be in a supermarket buying cereals with you, and it was very kind of you to pay for it,’ Neville joked on Sky Bet.
‘They rejected my card,’ Keane replied with a smirk. ‘It rejected my card twice. it was over my limit. I’ve got a budget of £50 a day.’
Neville said: ‘He text Theresa (Keane’s wife) – six quid won’t go through,’ before Keane added: ‘Send through another £50 – when your card is rejected, it is embarrassing, isn’t it,’ as the trio burst into uncontrollable laughter.
All for some cereal and yogurt – always be prepared Roy.
2 – Bust-up with Graeme Souness over penalty
If there’s one pundit who can match Keane’s ferocity it’s Graeme Souness, and the pair sensationally clashed at half-time of Argentina vs Saudi Arabia after the South American side were awarded a contentious penalty when Leandro Paredes went down.
‘You’ll learn a lot more if you listen rather than talk all the time!’
Those were the words of Souness after an epic verbal spar with fellow ITV pundit Keane.
Keane claimed no penalty. Souness claimed penalty. Rather than leave it at a difference of opinion, things escalated – fast.
Keane started the skirmish when he said: ‘I don’t think that’s a penalty,’ before Souness firmly responded: ‘He’s (the defender) not looking at the ball – he doesn’t know where the ball is and is just interested in the Argentinian player. He doesn’t know when it’s been kicked, he’s not looking – I think that is a pen.
Keane retorted: ‘No no no! All this will do is encourage diving. He’s (Paredes) dragging him (the defender) down.
Souness then said: ‘Roy you’re not listening to what Laura (Woods – ITV presenter) said. This is a directive from referees this is not about opinion this is is a fact – the guy wasn’t looking.’
Roy Keane and Graeme Souness clashed on ITV after Argentina were awarded a penalty
Keane then fumed: ‘I heard exactly what she said. This will encourage diving – I’m here to give my opinion. That’s not a pen!’
Souness hit back: ‘This isn’t about our opinion it’s about the laws of the game. The interpretation of the new law is if you’re not looking at the ball it’s a pen.’
Keane replied: ‘I’m here to give my opinion that’s not a pen I’ll say it again – that’s my opinion. That’s my opinion. I’m here to give my opinion that’s not a penalty’, before he repeated: ‘I’m here to give my opinion that’s not a penalty.’
Souness then took the clash to another level when he slammed Keane’s responses.
He said: ‘I’ve heard you say it 10 times, let someone else speak.’
It was another pure box office moment, so grab some popcorn and watch their exchange in full below.
1 – Spat with a whole nation over celebrations
After insulting fans, players and coaches, it was even a new level for Keane to insult a whole nation – as was the case during his clash with Brazil after their dancing celebrations during the Selecao’s last-16 win over South Korea.
‘Fantastic finish by Vinicius, great start to the game. But I’ve never seen so much dancing,’ Keane fumed.
‘I can’t believe what I’m watching, I can’t believe what I’m watching, it’s like watching Strictly [Come Dancing].’
Brazil’s dancing superstars were labelled as ‘disrespectful’ by a furious Roy Keane
Even manager Tite (front) got involved in the dancing, mimicking Richarlison’s ‘pigeon’
A fuming Keane likened it to watching popular BBC dance show ‘Strictly Come Dancing’
Brazil continued to offer up a variety of moves as the goals flew in, with even manager Tite getting involved as he mimicked Richarlison’s pigeon celebration following their third on the day.
‘I don’t like this. People say it’s their culture. But I think that’s really disrespecting the opposition,’ Keane furiously continued.
‘It’s four goals, and they are doing it every time. I don’t mind so much the first jig, it’s the one after that, and the manager getting involved. I’m not happy about it. I don’t think it’s good at all.’
Tite then hit back at Keane’s comments – saying those who criticised the celebrations did not understand Brazilian culture and that the dancing was ‘not disrespectful’ towards opponents – while a journalist from the nation called the Irishman ‘irrelevant’.
Keane wasn’t done there though and after Argentina’s triumph in the final, he threw a thinly-veiled dig at their arch-rivals Brazil, claiming Argentina’s players could dance all they want after victory, before adding: ‘That’s when you dance, when you win it.’
We’re all looking forward Keane vs Brazil Part II in 2026…