Keane's mission to Milan

ROY Keane has honed his coaching technique by taking a training session at AC Milan.

Derek Davis

ROY Keane has honed his coaching technique by taking a training session at AC Milan.

The Blues boss went to the Italian giants' training centre Milanello initially to see how the Rossoneri coach Carlo Ancelotti did things but once there was invited to take a training session.

Keane then put the Serie A side's first team squad, including the likes of David Beckham, Kaka, Filipo Inzaghi and Andriy Shevchenko, through one of his own coaching sessions.

Although AC Milan and Inter Milan both play at the San Siro, they have their own training centres with the Rossoneri using the Milanello in the village of Varese, about 30 miles outside the city.

The purpose-built centre has 46 rooms, and Italian president Silvio Berlusconi, who owns AC Milan, has his own suite, and the players use the 'Milan Lab' as part of their scientific training.

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Keane went to Milan just days before taking over as Blues boss last month. It is part of the Irishman's thirst for knowledge and determination to use a broad range of training techniques to keep things fresh.

While studying for his Pro Licence when Sunderland manager, Keane went to New Zealand to see how famed rugby union giants the All Blacks trained.

At Ipswich's Playford Road training centre he has already starting making changes. Security has been stepped up ensuring fewer people, including ex-players and staff, wander in and out. The catering is being looked at to ensure players follow a proper diet.

An emphasis has been put on punctuality and smartness. Players have been banned from wearing threequarter length tracksuit bottoms and will be expected to wear suits to games on match days.

While much of the coaching is done by long-time sidekick Tony Loughlan, Keane will oversee every aspect working closely with head of development Bryan Klug and technical skills coach Steve Foley.

Keane admits he can still be a bit old fashioned in some aspects of training but is a keen follower of new ideas and using modern technology.

He said: “I have moved with the times in terms of the scientific approach and what's available now but I'm also old school in the way I look at pre-season as well. It's about getting the right balance.

“It's massively important to get every aspect right at this club. I've not come down here on half measures.

“I'm looking at every detail of the club, the players, the staff, the training facilities, the mentality of the players.

“There are small details that people might see as trivial, things like time keeping, eating properly, but small details add up to the bigger picture. It's my job to make sure we are all focused on that.”

Meanwhile, Bayern Munich midfielder Stefan Effenberg has praised Keane's tackling style while slamming his former Manchester United team mate David Beckham.

Effenberg said: “There were duels (with Beckham) and also Roy Keane but Beckham was the more underhand of the pair.

“Roy Keane was hard but fair. He came from in front, knocked you away, everything was wonderful. But Beckham always came from behind, in the Achilles, I didn't like that.”