How Keane helped new signing Shane

SHANE O'Connor today revealed how Roy Keane has helped his career for a second time.The 19-year-old Liverpool academy graduate will today sign a one year contract with Ipswich Town but O'Conner recalled how Keane has already been a big help.

Derek Davis

SHANE O'Connor today revealed how Roy Keane has helped his career for a second time.

The 19-year-old Liverpool academy graduate will today sign a one year contract with Ipswich Town but O'Conner recalled how Keane has already been a big help.

“I have had contact with Roy before in Cork. I was a bit homesick when I first went to Liverpool and he helped me get over that.


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“He gave me a few words, in truth I would have been made up that he just spoke to me at all but he really helped.

“Then when my contract was up at Liverpool he said I could go over, no promises or anything, but I got a couple of goals in the reserves and he brought me over for these friendlies and I have done enough.”

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Keane revealed he had offered O'Connor a one year contract following Town's 2-0 defeat at Cork City.

I asked the youngster if he was going to accept the offer and he looked at me almost in disbelief.

“Of course I am - hands down,” he said.

“Being from Cork Roy Keane is one of my heroes. I had a tough few years at Liverpool but to join Ipswich and get the chance to possibly play in the Championship means everything to me.

“The important thing for me was to stay in football because I could have fizzled out and not get the chance to come back.

“Luckily enough I got this chance and I hope to make the most of it.”

Although he won an FA Youth Cup winners medal with Liverpool things didn't work out for him at Anfield.

O'Connor added: “I had a few problems at Liverpool and left so when the manager gave me this chance to go over and try and prove myself it was a chance I was not going to slip.”

After scoring twice in an 8-0 reserves win at Gorleston as an attacking midfielder, O'Connor showed his versatility by playing left back in the 3-0 victory at Waterford on Friday.

“Liverpool made me a left back but I feel I'm more an attack-minded player although I will play anywhere I'm asked for the team.”

Keane warned that O'Connor was one for the future and the player accepts he has still some developing to come.

He said: “I still have a long road to go before I get in the first team. I was made up just to come to Ireland and be part of the squad for it to be Cork as well is amazing.”

O'Connor is already settling in, helped by Irish young international team mate Ronan Murray, and is impressed with the Blues set up.

He said: “I played against Ipswich youth in a pre-season game one summer and the set up then was really good and I have always heard good things so when I came over this time that just backed it up really.”

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