By Larry Ryan
There was never any love lost between Roy Keane and Alan Shearer as players - and tonight they face each other again as pundits.
In Keane’s book The Second Half, he includes Shearer, alongside Alfie Haaland, Rob Lee, David Batty and Patrick Vieira in the select list of players “at the back of my mind”.
By which he meant: “If I get a chance, I’m going to fuckin’ hit you.”
And at the London Sports Writing Festival last year, Keane made it clear this was another hatchet that hasn’t yet been buried.
As the Daily Mail put it: “Keane made it clear that although he regularly came across Alan Shearer while working as a TV pundit, there is little or no chance of them ever building bridges such is the mutual dislike of each other.”
So far, Shearer and Keane have been kept apart on punditry duty, with Roy working mainly for rivals ITV.
But tonight, opportunity knocks for Keane as he sits beside Shearer in the BBC studio for live coverage of the Manchester United-Arsenal FA Cup tie.
Last time Roy got this close, he couldn’t resist a swing…