Former FA and Manchester City chairman David Bernstein has questioned how Roy Keane is still accepted in football 20 years on from his "absolutely appalling" challenge on Alf-Inge Haaland in a Manchester derby.
Man Utd legend Keane, these days a regular Sky Sports pundit, admitted deliberately injuring City midfielder Haaland in an Old Trafford derby in 2001.
The Republic of Ireland international was banned for three matches and fined £5,000 for the tackle, but after admitting he deliberately set out to hurt Haaland – who he blamed for his own previous injury – in his book a year later, Keane was banned for a further five matches and fined £150,000.
In Keane's book, he wrote: "I'd waited long enough. I f***ing hit him hard. The ball was there (I think).
"Take that you c***. And don't ever stand over me sneering about fake injuries."
Bernstein was City chairman at the time, and he remembers the incident vividly, with Haaland never playing another 90 minutes after the tackle.
"I've never forgotten it," Bernstein, who became FA chairman in 2011, told The Athletic.
"From a personal point of view, that was the worst individual thing I've been directly involved in, and the worst I've ever seen on the pitch.
"As a human being, it was an awful thing to see. Roy Keane stood over him and basically said, 'Take that, you b******.'
"It was done in cold blood. I have never forgiven Keane for that. I think, frankly, it's dreadful he's accepted in football the way he is. After doing something like that, I think it's absolutely appalling.
"Whenever Keane turns up on television, I switch off. I just won't watch it. I'm appalled that he's still involved with football. It's just not right.
"Things happen, injuries do happen, but to do it deliberately and admit it the way he did, to sell his book, I think is completely beyond the pale."
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