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[20 AUG 99] COVENTRY CITY FC NEWS
Strachan Surprised By Keane Move

Coventry manager Gordon Strachan said he was surprised when his chairman Bryan Richardson telephoned him to say the target was Robbie Keane.

"I had long admired Robbie as a player and was envious of my best pal Mark McGhee that he was playing for him at Wolves and not for me, but I did not think we had that kind of money in the coffers," said Strachan.

"I had been thinking along different lines in terms of who to bring into the club, but only because I thought Robbie Keane was out of our reach financially.

"I told the chairman that if the deal was going to adversely affect the club then not to do it, but he assured me it would be okay.

"Coventry City Football Club is the most important thing. It will be here long after we have gone and it is essential that its future is protected.

"It was a courageous move by the chairman to secure Robbie. I had gone home from the training camp with a mild illness when the chairman rang me to say he was on his way to talk to Wolves and I am sure that it was his boldness in driving to their chief executive John Richards’ doorstep which won the day."

The 6 million deal went through in 48 hours and Keane now gets the chance to show what he can do at the top domestic level.

Strachan confirmed he would ‘play a part’ against Derby County at Highfield Road which could mean that he will be on the substitutes’ bench, but the odds are that he will start the match. Coventry, with just one penalty from their opening three matches, are desperate to score goals.

The problem for Strachan is to decide on his best combination. Noel Whelan and John Aloisi linked up in last week’s 1-1 draw at Wimbledon when the team as a whole played well.

If the manager wants Keane to work off a target man he will select Aloisi, but if he goes for pace then Whelan will get the nod.
  

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CWN / Sport / Football / Coventry City FC / 20 Aug 99

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