Robbie Keane has insisted that he will demand the very best from the Middlesbrough players, as he prepares for his first season as assistant manager at the Riverside Stadium.
Keane joined Middlesbrough last month, as part of a new-look coaching team under new manager Jonathan Woodgate.
Woodgate was appointed as the new head coach at the Riverside Stadium last month, after Middlesbrough decided not to renew Tony Pulis’ contract, after he failed to guide the team to promotion from the Championship last season.
Keane is looking forward to working in his new role as assistant manager and has insisted that both Woodgate and himself will demand the very best from the players.
“Myself and Woody are winners, we demand the best,” Keane told the Daily Mail.
“You have to let people know when things aren’t right. I’ve always done that as a player, as a captain. Be that with players or staff, it’s about standards. If things need to be said then they’ll be said, it’s a man’s game.
“I will demand the very best from the players, it’s all about high standards. You have to train as you’d play and earn the right to be in that team.
“I want players to express themselves, like I did. We want players to have no fear, don’t be frightened to try things.
“Use your imagination, be clever and cheeky around the box. Those are the players who win games. We will encourage that freedom. Then, it’s up to them.”
Middlesbrough face newly-promoted Luton Town at Kenilworth Road in the opening game of the new season on Friday.
Middlesbrough fans had grown tired and frustrated with the defensive style of football that the team played under Pulis, but with Woodgate in charge, there are plenty of reasons from them to be optimistic ahead of the new season.
It’s definitely the start of a new era at the Riverside Stadium and I think fans will be encouraged by Keane’s comments about what he will demand from the player.
I think Keane will be a good appointment for Middlesbrough. Even though he has no experience as a manager, he will have learnt a great deal from working as Mick McCarthy’s assistant for the Republic of Ireland.
He was a top striker during his playing days too and the Middlesbrough players will be able to learn a great deal from working under him.