Rio Ferdinand has recalled how Roy Keane clashed with Sir Alex Ferguson in the manager’s office before his departure from Manchester United in 2005.
The United team were shocked by Ferguson’s decision to sack captain Roy Keane after he criticized his team-mates.
Keane enjoyed a brilliant time at United, playing over 400 games for the club and winning a number of trophies, including the treble in 1999.
However, Keane’s time at United ended unexpectedly early after he criticized his team-mates on the club’s television channel MUTV, leading to a clash between him and Ferguson in the manager’s office.
Keane was heavily critical of United’s performance in the 4-1 defeat to Middlesbrough and did not hold back in his assessment of players such as Ferdinand, John O’Shea, Alan Smith, Kieran Richardson and Darren Fletcher.
Rio Ferdinand has recalled how shocked the Manchester United squad were at Sir Alex Ferguson’s decision to sack Roy Keane in 2005
Ferguson was furious after Keane criticized his team-mates on MUTV following a defeat to Middlesbrough
Commenting on Ferdinand’s performance, Keane said: “Just because you get paid £120,000 a week and play well against Tottenham for 20 minutes, you think you’re a superstar.”
United manager Ferguson was furious at Keane’s comments and stopped the footage from being broadcast.
Ferdinand revealed that Ferguson had called the team into his office to watch the video, which caused tensions to continue to rise between the manager and his coaching staff and Keane.
Talk about the Rio Ferdinand presents FIVE YouTube channels, Ferdinand said: “We play a game on a Saturday, a player is nominated on MUTV to do an analysis of that game. “We are beaten by Middlesbrough, everyone is playing nonsense. Roy Keane does the video analysis and destroys the whole team, including me. He goes through people one by one, hammers them.
“Before it goes out the manager gets wind of it, cancels the broadcast and says it’s not going out anywhere, that’s a shame, it can’t happen.” He calls a meeting at the training ground, we all go to the manager’s office , we look at it, and the manager leaves. It’s a film in itself, everyone shudders. The manager says, “How dare you?” I’m the only one who should speak publicly about our players.”
Ferdinand stated that Ferguson subsequently informed the team that Keane would no longer play for the club. In fact, the midfielder left United two weeks later and eventually moved to Celtic.
According to Ferdinand, “crazy things were said” during the clash between Keane and the coaching staff.
Ferdinand said: “Roy has a chance, it’s going on again between the coach and Roy, there’s been some crazy things said.” When we start training the next day the manager calls a meeting while we’re on the training pitch go, and says: “Just so you know, Roy Keane will never play for this football club again.”
Asked what message Ferguson’s decision sent to him, Ferdinand said: “Shade me, the woods.” Don’t jerk off with this guy, don’t mess with Sir Alex. This guy is the truth. This guy is the coldest guy ever. This is our captain, this is a legend of the football club, a phenomenal player, a great guy to have around when the going gets tough. You know, you can look to the right and go, Roy, where are we going now?
Ferdinand was taken aback by Ferguson’s ruthless approach to getting rid of Keane
Keane was very successful at United but Ferguson did not hesitate to sack him
“The manager says if I’m not on guard, this won’t happen.” My husband is done, he’s done. He does that, he’ll never wear that gear again, he looks around and suddenly he says, “Let’s go and train.”
Ferdinand was taken aback by Ferguson’s presence and the way he handled the situation.
He said: “I know some of the men’s legs were flaky on the way there afterwards, like spaghetti on the way to the training ground because Sir Alex Ferguson has a cold, you have to be cold in situations like that.”
In 2019, Keane proposed in an interview with Get away from the ball that his departure was not only due to the MUTV incident, but also to his difficult relationship with United assistant coach Carlos Queiroz.