Former Stoke and Ipswich forward Jon Walters has reignited his feud with Manchester United icon Roy Keane after once telling the Sky Sports pundit “I’ll rip your head off” during a training session. Keane coached Walters during his time in charge at Portman Road, but they did not end their relationship on good terms.
After retiring in 2006, Keane went on to coach Sunderland and then Ipswich where he was met by Walters. Once Walters informed his manager that he wanted to leave the club, the news did not go over so well once Keane insisted that his striker would stay unless the Tractor Boys’ valuation was met.
“This is childish. It is not me now,” Walters told Cheshire Live in 2019, nine years after the bust-up. “I said ‘Come on then, if you want to have a fight then let’s go’. I went to walk out of the room and as I was walking out he said something very personal, nothing to do with him, but it touched a nerve with me.
“So I shut the door and came back in. I said ‘Hit me first and see what happens to you’. ‘Give me the chance and I will rip your head off’ is basically what I was saying to him.”
Click here to join our WhatsApp community to be the first to receive breaking and exclusive Man Utd news.
Walters got his move to Stoke shortly after, Keane did not forget their meeting that day. At an Off The Ball show, the ex-Ireland assistant was asked about a number of his former players and he needed no prompt to sound off on Walters.
“Listen, I know all about Jon Walters,” Keane said. “I know all about him. Bluffer. Again, talks a good game. Then does the circuit, goes on the TV. How harsh he was treated by me, he’s crying on the TV, family situation, he’s the only one whose… do me a favour. Maybe he should lie low for a while. Have a look at his medals? That wouldn’t take long.”
Now, Walters has explained that Keane dug him out because he was the only player who “got one over” the ex-United hardman. “I don’t think anyone has ever got one over on Roy Keane as a player, as a teammate or as a player under him,” he recently told talkSPORT. “I think that’s the only time that’s happened to him, when I was at Ipswich and he’s tried to make out I didn’t, and that’s what you shouldn’t lie about, the truth will always come out.
“When the time’s right the truth will come out. At some point I might go through my career and do a book and it will be a story that no one knows anything about, it will be a story that no other player has gone through, I can guarantee that. I will respond at some point.
“After I left Ipswich we were fine with Ireland until he brought everything up again. The Irish stuff was ridiculous, he was the assistant manager of a national team, you’re preparing for a game in France, and that was wrong.
“He came back with that because I’m the only player who ever got one over on him, not just once but twice, and he knows it, and that’s probably what annoys him.”