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Roker Roundup 23-24

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Roker Roundup: Exciting youngster features in Sunderland’s behind closed doors friendly

Carlos Edwards on being b*llocked by Keano; an exciting young prospect played for the first team in a behind closed doors friendly at the SOL; and Asamoah Gyan v John Mensah... who wins that fight?!

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Edwards on Keane b******ings

Roy Keane has been strongly linked with the vacant Celtic managerial position in recent weeks and Carlos Edwards, who played for Keane during his time at Sunderland, has been speaking to Talksport about his time with the Irish legend.

Edwards revealed that he received a few b*llockings from Keane during his time playing under him at both Sunderland and Ipswich Town and that he could go overboard at times:

I got a few b******ings for messing up in games and causing a few goals, but I never got the brunt of it. Roy had his moments when he let a few steams out, which is understandable.

He went overboard at times, but as a player you had to sometimes take it on the chin and just try to move on.

When emotion gets the better of you, which happens to most people, a few words were said.

In my career with him, I never saw him physically go at anyone, but words can hurt a lot. There were times he could have dealt with things in a different way.

There were always tough moments because every player had to be on their game.

If training started at 9am, he would like you to be at training maybe an hour before, he’d like you to socialise with your teammates and have a bit of breakfast.

The guys bought into the philosophy he brought in because you’re only seeing each other for a short space of time during the day, but he wanted us to be more connected on and off the field.

Everybody had to be on their A-game when it came to him, not just in games, but in training, in the way you carry yourself, because you’re not just representing a Roy Keane player, you’re representing the club.

So he made those things very, very clear to the players.

Edwards also explained how Keane used to join in training sessions and was still good enough to embarrass some of his charges:

He used to join in on the training sessions quite a lot. He used to love that.

He used to take the mick out of some of the guys sometimes because he still had those touches.

By him joining the training, it gave the guys that extra spark to impress him a bit more. That was a good sign.

Sometimes he’d just sit back and watch the training and have his second in command and first-team coaches do a bit.

When it came to the nitty, gritty side of it, making sure everything is solid and secure in team selection, he was the man at the forefront.

Sunderland v Bolton Wanderers - Premier League Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

Gyan on Mensah threat

John Mensah may have been injury prone during his Sunderland career but was a formidable presence on and off the pitch.

His former Sunderland and Ghana team-mate Asamoah Gyan has told a story to underline just how formidable Mensah was, even to his own team-mates.

Sunderland were beating Tottenham 1-0 at the Stadium of Light during the 2010-11 season, when Mensah gave a corner away which led to Michael Dawson scoring an equaliser on the stroke of half time.

During the half-time interval, as Sunderland players were unwilling to confront Mensah over his error, Gyan was volunteered to speak to the ‘Rock of Gibraltar’ but made clear to the striker that any criticism would lead to Gyan being physically beaten.

You can watch Gyan tell the story on the video below:

Sunderland v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Friendly debut for youngster

Sunderland signed South Shields youngster Harry Gardiner earlier this month, as the forward signed a two-and-a-half year scholarship deal with the club after a successful eight week trial.

He may only be 17 but Gardiner has already featured for the first team, albeit in a behind-closed-doors friendly on Tuesday afternoon at the Academy of Light.

Gardiner came on as a late substitute for Jack Diamond and was congratulated on LinkedIn by his agent, David Lynch of Yushu Group.


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