Keane stance on Yorke to avert T&T backlash

September 26, 2008

Sunderland boss Roy Keane will send Dwight Yorke away on international duty next month with his blessing, but adamant he is not fit enough to play three games in a week.

The Irishman found himself embroiled in a furious row with Jack Warner, FIFA vice-president and special advisor to the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation, when he summoned the 36-year-old back from the Caribbean between World Cup qualifiers against Guatemala and the United States earlier this month.

Warner accused Keane of lacking respect for one of international football's smaller nations, with the Black Cats' boss branding him "a clown" in return as a war of words escalated.

Yorke was this week called up once against for qualifiers against Guatemala and the United States, as well as a friendly clash with the Dominican Republic, raising fears of another stand-off.

However, while Keane is standing by his decision to recall Yorke, who had not played a senior game for his club after fracturing a cheekbone in pre-season when he headed off last time, he is happy for him to join up in October, albeit with an important proviso.

He said: "He goes with my best wishes. He has had two or three weeks' training.

"My big issue the last month was that he wasn't 100% fit. I still don't think he is capable of going over there and playing three games in eight or nine days.

"He goes with my best wishes, and he knows that. But he wasn't fit enough to play two games last month.

"Nobody will ever change my mind on that, nobody, not even Mr Warner, whatever his name is. Nobody.

"He will go, but if somebody asked me if he can play the three games for them next month, I would say, 'no chance'. He is not fit enough, his body is not up to it.

"But he can go and have an influence in maybe one, possibly two of the games.

"That's up to their manager to decide."