Tag Archives: Alex Ferguson

ITV…Best of Enemies – Roy Keane vs Patrick Viera

12 Dec

There was a time when the English Premier League was dominated by two teams, Manchester United and its London rival, Arsenal FC. For close to a decade, between 1995 and 2003, the Premier League title was swapped back and forth between these two teams.

Many great players featured in those title-winning teams, Theirry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Eric Cantona, David Seaman, David Beckham, Paul Scholes amongst others. At the beating hearts of the two teams stood two men, Roy Keane and Patrick Viera. They were both midfielders, both captains and both very, very very tough tackling, dominant and abrasive footballers.

Whenever the football fixtures brought Manchester United and Arsenal together during those years, the match was guaranteed to be explosive and not just in the football sense. In these matches Viera and Keane were Centurions leading out their legions into battle and both men led from the front not shying away from confrontation both on and off the pitch. Their most famous confrontation was on October 2004, when a ruckus in the tunnel at the end of the game involved lots of shoving and barging and slices of pizza being used as weapons, and invariably dubbed Pizza-gate, with Keane and Viera very much in the mix of things.

Ten years later both men are back face to face, much older, a few pounds heavier and a lot more mellower than their younger selves. The setting was a disused warehouse somewhere, both men squared up to themselves, smiled.. and then began an hour long reminiscence of thier days in top flight football, this was ITV4′s documentary Best Of Enemies.

It was clear that there was much mutual respect between the two, and both saw their exploits over the years as a necessary means to an end, rather than an end in itself. They talked about their relationship with their respective Managers, the best players they played with and the battles between Arsenal and Manchester United.

If you are football fan this is an entertaining documentary and worth a watch. IF you missed it is still on ITV Player.