Keane on borrowed time

TIME is running out for Roy Keane.

TIME is running out for Roy Keane.

Yesterday’s dismal 4-1 defeat at deadly rivals Norwich City, in a desperately one-sided East Anglian derby, has heaped yet more pressure on Ipswich Town’s high profile manager.

The Town boss knows that he is on borrowed time, following an awful run of seven defeats in the last nine league games.

He has enjoyed the backing of owner and chairman, Marcus Evans, and the vast majority of supporters, ever since his appointment 19 months ago.

And there are no signs that Mr Evans is yet ready to wield the axe. But Keane must rediscover the winning formula soon, otherwise even Town’s reclusive supremo will lose his patience.

Yesterday was a bitter pill to swallow for all Town fans.

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City hit-man Grant Holt plundered a hat-trick, helped by some woeful Town defending, with Wes Hoolahan adding the fourth.

Damien Delaney, who had given Town hope with a headed equaliser, was sent off for a professional foul on danger-man Holt before half-time to effectively seal the visitors’ fate.

Keane is meeting his precarious position head-on.

“When you’re losing matches, it creates pressure,” confessed Keane. “But that’s the pressure of the job. You know that when you come into it, and you have got to deal with it.

“It was pretty tough last year as well, when we didn’t win for 14 or 15 games.

“But obviously the expectation this year was going to be a bit better.

“As a manager, I analyse my position every single day. Whether we won three or four, or lost one or two, whatever that might be, and that doesn’t change. I analyse whether I am getting the best out of the players.

“We’ve got to try and turn things around, but it’s not going to get any easier because we’ve got a tough set of games coming up,” added Keane.

Even though Keane’s job, for the moment, does not appear under threat, he is not kidding himself. “We have heard from clubs before about managers not being under pressure, and yet the next day they are gone!

“I take any comment that comes out with a pinch of salt,” added Keane ruefully.

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