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Crazy to snub Ireland – Keane


first_img Press Association The 42-year-old former Sunderland and Ipswich boss had been out of the game since January 2011 when he got the call from O’Neill, and he revealed the offer to work with his country once again was one he could not refuse. Keane said: “I know people think I am a little bit crazy, but I would have been crazy to have turned it down, it was just too good an opportunity. He said: “We have signed a contract for the next couple of years, and that’s the focus. “It’s always dangerous to sign any kind of contract thinking of some sort of get-out or what might happen further down the road. That’s not in the mindset.” Keane is confident he can improve the players in the Ireland squad, and particularly the midfielders, although he was mystified by reports that he had told former international Ray Houghton that there are bigger talents in the current set-up than he was in his day. He said: “I don’t think I said that, no. I don’t remember saying that. I don’t know if Ray had a few pints in him. “Maybe I said something along the lines of maybe there is more potential, and sometimes the players are the last to think that. “Maybe there has been a mentality that when they play for Ireland or even at club level that sometimes they don’t realise how good they are.” “There wasn’t one bone in my body that said, ‘No, this is not for me’. As soon as I met Martin and we discussed it, I thought, ‘yes’. There was nothing to discuss. I just said, ‘Yes, let’s go for it’.” Keane took his first managerial job at the Stadium of Light at the age of just 35 back in August 2006, and guided the Black Cats to promotion back to the Barclays Premier League in his first season. He departed in December 2008 with the club languishing in the lower reaches of the table, and he spent a little more than 20 months at Ipswich before his reign was brought to an untimely conclusion. However, the former Manchester United star is convinced he should have had more chances than he had to return to football before O’Neill brought him in from the cold. He said: “I have had two opportunities to get back into football – one was working abroad, another was an international job – and it didn’t quite fall into place, but there are certainly clubs in England I feel should have given me an opportunity. “But a lot of coaches say that, so yes, it was frustrating, but also you need to be patient and wait for the right opportunity. “I am just glad that someone like Martin O’Neill said, ‘Listen, do you fancy coming and working with me?’, and really with the Irish team, it seemed like such a good fit, I couldn’t say no.” O’Neill revealed as he was unveiled on Saturday that there was no clause in his two-year contract that would allow him to leave for another job, and Keane is not even thinking along those lines. Roy Keane has admitted he would have been “crazy” to turn down the chance to become Ireland manager Martin O’Neill’s assistant.last_img read more


UW travels to Oregon


first_imgJanelle Gabrielson (6) and the Wisconsin volleyball team hopes to find success this weekend at the Oregon State Invitational.[/media-credit]After hosting its own tournament last week, the Wisconsin volleyball team will play in the Oregon State Invitational this weekend.During their own InnTowner Invitational — which took place at the Field House last weekend — the Badgers went 1-2, sweeping South Dakota, but losing to Duke and Ohio. While the outcome of the tournament was less than ideal, head coach Pete Waite saw improvement throughout the course of the weekend.“I was really pleased with their mental toughness and desire on the court,” Waite said. “I think the people in the stands saw a real improvement and saw that they really were fighting for every point.”Now, the Badgers will head to Oregon State to take on Seattle, Cal State Fullerton and Oregon State. Last year, UW swept Cal State Fullerton at the UNLV Classic at the beginning of the season. However, the Badgers lost to Oregon State in the Marquette Cheese Bowl last season. The loss still lingers in some players’ minds.“I think it’s in some of the returning players’ minds,” sophomore setter Janelle Gabrielsen said. “We would really like to beat them on their home turf. I think if we keep playing like we have been in practice, and we play as a team, then we’ll have a good shot.”For senior outside hitter Brittney Dolgner, though, playing Oregon State means matching up with one of the Pac-10’s top outside hitters, Rachel Rourke. In last year’s match, Rourke overpowered the Badgers, which Dolgner credits to much of the Beavers’ success.“I take it personally because their left side was just killing us,” Dolgner said. “I really just want to get in there and stuff [Rourke] a few times. I just think that if we shut her down, we’ll shut their whole team down.”But with those strong words aside, Dolgner noted that practice has been focusing mostly on defense over the past week, which was one of the Badgers’ weaker points during the tournament last weekend.“We’ve mostly been focusing on blocking,” Dolgner said. “We got beat a lot on the block last weekend so that was one of our main focuses.”“I think they’re really going to bring it to us again,” she continued. “Oregon [State] beat us with a couple good hitters last year, and I think we’ve been working on defending them all week.”But while the Badgers are confident in their attempt to upset Oregon State on its home court, they will have to face a Beavers squad with five returning starters.Wisconsin, on the other hand, has eight new players who have not yet been fully acclimated to the college game. Nevertheless, Dolgner has seen the team improve immensely over the past week, and she feels that the team’s improvement, coupled with a win in the upcoming tournament, would be a huge step for the Badgers.“A win would definitely be great, and just the steps we’ve taken to get to where we are is really great,” Dolgner said. “A lot of people can’t tell the difference between the freshmen and the seniors, and that just shows how much we’ve improved.”Going on the road for the first time this season, the Badgers will enter an environment other than the friendly confines of the Field House. While that may be a daunting task to the younger players on the team, according to Waite, many times a team’s goal can be much stronger on the road when entering a more hostile atmosphere.last_img read more