Manchester United legends Roy Keane, Gary Neville and Patrice Evra were never known to mince their words during their time at the club, and that hasn’t been any different during their recent work as pundits for ITV during this summer’s World Cup in Russia. The former Ireland coach, Valencia manager and current West Ham United defender were present to offer their perspective on Saturday’s match between Germany and Sweden, which was one by Joachim Low’s team 2-1 thanks to a late Toni Kroos free kick. Yet it was a deeply difficult game for Die Mannschaft, with Bayern Munich defender Jerome Boateng sent off in the second half after two bookable offences.
The former Manchester City centre back, a reputed target for United this summer, was on the end of some brutal criticism by the former United trio, too:
“The two centre halves will give you a heart-attack,” Keane said during the game, in quotes carried by Teamtalk. “Boateng has got to come off. Boateng has been a disgrace. He’s been walking around he’s like it’s a game of Sunday league football. He’s been a disgrace, get him off.”
Neville was in agreement with his former captain, stating: “Roy is absolutely right, the centre-backs have been a joke, an absolute joke. Boateng thinks for some reason he is (Franz) Beckenbauer, thinks he’s the player. He’s played under Pep and started to believe he is a fantastic football player. He has been a joke in this first half. He’s got delusions, thinks he is a player; he’s wandering forward, ambling in the game.
Just to round things off, Evra offred the following: “He had a bad game. Sometimes you can see he plays like Beckenbauer, but tonight he had a really bad game. And actually when he was sent off, Germany played better.”
Given that Boateng is reportedly a target for United this summer, it’s certainly timely for three former players at the club to be so publicly criticising him. Here’s hoping that the Bayern defender can turn things around if Germany reach the knockout stages.