Keith Keane fears ‘match-fixer’ tag

Former Republic of Ireland U21 player Keith Keane fears he will be always be tagged a "match-fixer" despite all charges against him being dropped by the police last week.

Preston midfielder Keane and 12 other players were charged in April with spot fixing — allegedly being paid to be booked or sent-off — but the case was dropped. It has been a nightmare time for Keane and he fears it is something that will follow him for the rest of his career — and life.

He said: “My biggest worry is that for the rest of my life people will still consider me a match-fixer. That frightens me. They (the police) don’t tell you anything. You don’t know what is going on and that scares you.

“I didn’t understand why I was arrested in the first place and truthfully I still don’t. It has been a tortuous nine months. There has been no apology from anyone and that’s a frustration.

“The media were running all our names and pictures when we were charged, but now it’s next to nothing.

“They arrest us, let our faces be circulated and after we are told we are cleared it’s silence. There is no mention of it anywhere now and that’s why I believe some people will understandably still see us as match fixers. It’s wrong.

“We should never had been brought in in the first place and I am worried that my name will always be associated with this scandal. “At first, myself and others laughed and joked about it. That’s how perplexed we were. Then the reality hit home that this could actually ruin us.

“I am thankful that it never got to that stage but there is a lot of damage done. How much, only time will tell.”


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