Manchester United legend Roy Keane has been branded “arrogant” and “shameful” over his criticism of Declan Rice, with West Ham co-owner David Gold considering the comments to be “shocking”.
Former Republic of Ireland international Keane offered a scathing assessment of Rice’s game prior to England overcoming Kosovo 4-0 in their Euro 2020 qualifier.
He previously worked with the 20-year-old before the versatile Hammers star took the decision to switch allegiance from Ireland to the Three Lions.
Keane told ITV: “Where he needs to improve, there are plenty of aspects if you think about it.
“Over the last few months he has had a lot of praise, I worked with him while he was with the Ireland squad.
“Where does he need to improve, where do you want me to start? His positional play I don’t think is consistent enough, he doesn’t stay with runners, he’s sloppy in possession.
“I can go on.”
Rice has been linked with a move to Manchester United over recent months, with many left impressed by the progress he has made in a relatively short space of time.
Keane is clearly not among his fans, and that irks West Ham supremo Gold.
He considers the Irishman to be bitter and has questioned why the Premier League icon felt the need to hit out at a young player still learning his trade.
Gold told Claret and Hugh: "Keane needs to get over it [leaving Ireland]. Declan made his choice and I think that is what’s behind it as far as Keane is concerned.
“It’s pretty shameful when a former professional talks the way he did about a young man. It was low, outrageous, unfair and arrogant to pick him out of all the England players.
“It wasn’t even an analysis of the boy who is 20 years old who has barely started his career in the international team for God’s sake.
“This isn’t the first time he’s done it. In a previous game he said he should be sitting in the studio with the pundits rather than being on the pitch. Shocking!
“Declan has chosen to play for England and Roy Keane needs to get over that.”
Rice will be back in domestic action on Saturday when West Ham take in a derby date with London rivals Tottenham.