From The Vault: Roy Keane's hilarious transfer story about ex-Portsmouth, West Ham and Bolton midfielder

Roy Keane is one of football’s most recognisable personalities.

Sunday, 24th October 2021, 1:00 pm

And for a time, the ex-Manchester United and Republic of Ireland legend managed Sunderland.

Keane took over as manager on Wearside with the club sitting second bottom of the Championship in 2006.

He then masterminded the Wearsiders’ promotion back to the Premier League as champions after an incredible run of form at the end of a memorable campaign.

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‘From The Vault’ is a brand new series of nostalgic pieces and photo articles brought to you by The Echo.

Keane kept Sunderland in the top-flight the following campaign before resigning the season after.

The former hardman, however, isn’t shy of telling a goos story – and the tale of how he tried to sign Matty Taylor has become the stuff of legend.

The then former Portsmouth midfielder was surplus to requirements at Fratton Park at the time, and had a choice of moving to the Black Cats or Bolton.

“Eventually, I got Matty Taylor up as he was leaving Portsmouth and had the opportunity to go to Sunderland or Bolton.

“So I met him at the stadium, in the boardroom, gave him all the talk for an hour or two… he said he’s got a lot to think about.

“I said: ‘Of course, you take your time, it’s a huge decision. I’ll walk you down to the car park’. As we walked down he says, ‘listen Roy, it’s a huge decision, thanks for the chat’.

“Bolton and Sunderland… there is no comparison, but listen, Bolton weren’t a bad team at the time.

“I saw him walking to his car and say, ‘brilliant, thanks for coming’.

“He turns his back and I’ve got a text, and not many people text me.

“It says, ‘Hi Roy, it’s Matty Taylor…’

“I’ve got my phone; I think it was a BlackBerry, at the time they were in. I can see him getting into his car!

“[The message continued] ‘I’ve decided to go to Bolton’. And I’m there waving him out the car park!”

‘From The Vault’ is a series of nostalgic pieces and photo articles brought to you by The Echo, highlighting some of the best scenes and stories from seasons gone by for Sunderland supporters to enjoy.

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