• Republic of Ireland

Keane set for Republic of Ireland return

ESPN staff
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Keane has been working as a television pundit since leaving Ipswich in 2011 © PA Photos
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Roy Keane could be set for a return to the Republic of Ireland national team setup, with ESPN sources confirming that Martin O'Neill has lined up the former captain as his assistant coach.

As ESPN reported on Friday, O'Neill is set to be appointed as Ireland's boss after giving Football Association of Ireland chiefs the green light in their bid to name him as Giovanni Trapattoni's successor.

O'Neill is in need of a new No. 2 as long-time ally John Robertson has been suffering with health issues, but the appointment of former Manchester United midfielder Keane would be controversial.

Keane is a divisive personality in Irish football following his infamous walk-out from the Ireland squad on the eve of the 2002 World Cup finals.

Meanwhile, O'Neill looks set to be confirmed as the new Republic of Ireland boss in the coming days, with the FAI board set to ratify the appointment at a meeting on Monday.

O'Neill, 61, has always been the FAI's first choice - despite rumours they were keen to bring Mick McCarthy, currently in charge of Ipswich, back for a second spell - and is expected to be unveiled before Ireland's friendly with Latvia on November 15.

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