Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

No risk in Aston Villa move, says Robbie Keane

Aston Villa's new loan signing Robbie Keane during a press conference at Bodymoor Heath, Sutton Coldfield

Robbie Keane insists he is not risking the reputation he has built up during a decade of Barclays Premier League football by returning for a short loan spell with Aston Villa.

The Republic of Ireland international has joined Villa from Los Angeles Galaxy until the end of February and is in contention to make his debut against visiting Everton tomorrow.

Keane's previous taste of the top flight was an injury-hit spell on loan at West Ham last season before he left Tottenham for Galaxy in the summer.

But the 31-year-old is now fully fit and believes he is a wiser player than the one who came close to moving from Wolves to Villa 13 years ago.

Keane said: "It (damaging my reputation) is not something I've thought about. What impact can one player make in six games or so?

"Hopefully it will be a good one. I hope it works out well for both parties. I don't think I'm running a risk, no.

"I've had a good career in the Premiership and scored a lot of goals.

"When you get older and play the amount of games I have played, you get wiser, you read the game better than you do when you were 17."

Keane is looking forward to aiding Villa through what manager Alex McLeish has described as a transitional season.

He said: "I will be doing my utmost to help the team and make as much impact as I can in the seven weeks I am here.

"Villa are a good side in a transitional period with a new manager. It takes time for a new manager to get his ideas across and get his own players in."

Keane insists he is not winding down his career and said: "I want to play as long as I can whether that's in the MLS (Major Soccer League) or anywhere else.

"I love playing football and love training, I could easily be sitting on the beach now and having a holiday but I enjoy the game and being around the lads.

"As long as I feel good and don't get too many injuries I'll play as long as I can regardless of where that is."

Keane has reiterated his belief that former club Spurs can challenge the two Manchester clubs for the league title this season.

He said: "If you look back it was Chelsea trying to get Luka (Modric).

"It might be very difficult now to try and convince Luka to go to Chelsea because it's looking like Tottenham have overtaken Chelsea.

"They've got top, top players at Spurs and they're proving that and you can see the players gelling together now. They're certainly going to be up there as title contenders, no question about that."

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