10 Things you need to know about Robbie Keane

Robbie Keane is in Liverpool and expected to complete his dream transfer to Anfield in the next 24 hours, a move that will take the total amount of transfer money spent on him past the £55m mark.

Here’s all you need to know about one of Britain’s most expensive ever players…

1) Robert David Keane was born on 5 July 1980 in Tallaght, Dublin. He first made a name for himself as a schoolboy playing for North Dublin side Crumlin United, and actually turned down one of his boyhood clubs Liverpool to join Championship side Wolverhampton Wanderers, on the grounds that he would have a better chance of playing for their first team.

2) He made his debut, aged just 17, on 9 August 1997, scoring both goals in a 2-0 league victory at Norwich. Keane went on to score nine more goals that term, but cemented his reputation the year after by finishing the 1998/99 season as Wolves’ top score with 16.

3) In August 2000 he became the then most expensive British teenager ever when Premier League side Coventry shelled out £6m for his services. And 12 goals in 34 appearances later, Keane was being courted not just by the best teams in England, but also Europe's glitterati.

4) He eventually signed for Marcello Lippi’s Inter Milan in a staggering £13m deal, joining a forward line that included Brazilian legend Ronaldo and Italian ace Christian Vieri. Unfortunately Lippi was sacked soon after and Keane made just six appearances before new boss Marco Tardelli loaned him to Leeds United in December 2000.

5) Nine goals in 14 starts for Leeds saw manager David O’Leary make the move permanent in May 2001, splashing out £12m. But Keane failed to live up to the fee in his first full season and after only scoring a disappointing 10 goals in all competitions next time out, he was one of the victims of Elland Road'sfinancial difficulties and was offloaded to Spurs for a relatively cut-price £7m.

6) Glenn Hoddle, the manager who signed him for Spurs, predicted Keane would make White Hart Lane his “spiritual home”, and for once he was right: Keane scored an impressive 107 goals in 254 appearances, was made Ledley King’s vice-captain in 2005 and is the only player in the club’s history to win their Player of the Year award three times (in 2003, 2006 and 2008). This compilation shows just why the Spurs fans love him so much:

7) That video showcases his famous goal celebration, involving a cartwheel and a forward roll, topped off by a salvo fired into the crowd from imaginary guns. Former Spurs boss Martin Jol banned him from performing it in case he injured himself, but Keane brought it out of retirement to celebrate his 100th Spurs goal, scored against Sunderland on 19 January 2008.

8) He was part of Ireland’s own ‘golden generation’ of young talent that won the Uefa U18 European Championships in 1998. He made his senior debut against the Czech Republic in March 1998, scoring his first goal six months later against Malta. He has gone on to play for his country 81 times, scored 33 goals – 12 more than second placed Niall Quinn - and was made captain by manager Steve Staunton in 2006.

9) He married former Miss Ireland contestant Claudine Palmer last month. Here’s a picture of the happy couple starting out on their relationship back in 2004.

Robbie Kean Claudine Palmer

10) He is the 13th player to score 100 goals in the Premier League. Despite all that, he has only won one major honour: the 2008 Carling Cup with Spurs. Although, as you’ll see from the video below, it DID mean a lot to him.Surely more silverware awaits at Anfield?

10 Things you need to know about Robbie Keane Reviewed by admin Ucop on 8:08 PM Rating: 5

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