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Roy Keane has been called the ‘standout star of the 2022 Qatar World Cup’ for his ‘no-nonsense’ knowledge

He was known as the tough tackle enforcer of Manchester United’s star-studded midfield during their glory days.

But now Roy Keane is winning praise from around the world for his no-nonsense analysis as part of ITV’s broadcast team at the 2022 World Cup.

The Irish pundit, 51, has earned the admiration of fans for his ‘straightforward’ approach – including venting the hypocrisy of the England and Wales captains for pulling out over fears of sanctions for wearing the rainbow OneLove bracelet .

Others praised his impressive beard, with an ever-growing army of female fans taking to social media to share how they find the former Manchester United captain ‘sexy’ after he trimmed his well-shaped facial hair.

The ITV analyst was widely praised earlier in the tournament for his impassioned speech after Harry Kane and Gareth Bale pulled out and chose not to wear the OneLove bracelet in their opening matches.

He was also applauded by human rights groups after leading FIFA’s condemnation of FIFA’s controversial decision to give Qatar the rights to host the 2010 World Cup.

ITV pundit Roy Keane has won critical acclaim from around the world for his no-nonsense analysis as part of the broadcaster’s coverage of the 2022 World Cup

The Irish pundit, 51, and former Manchester United midfield enforcer has earned the admiration of fans with his 'straightforward' approach

The Irish pundit, 51, and former Manchester United midfield enforcer has earned the admiration of fans with his 'straightforward' approach

The Irish pundit, 51, and former Manchester United midfield enforcer has earned the admiration of fans with his ‘straightforward’ approach

Roy Keane (pictured above in action in 2002) enjoyed a brilliant career as the tough tackling engine who controlled Manchester United's star-studded midfield during their glory days

Roy Keane (pictured above in action in 2002) enjoyed a brilliant career as the tough tackling engine who controlled Manchester United's star-studded midfield during their glory days

Roy Keane (pictured above in action in 2002) enjoyed a brilliant career as the tough tackling engine who controlled Manchester United’s star-studded midfield during their glory days

Several of Keane’s admirers took to social media to praise the heartfelt pundit.

One user said, “You just have to love Roy Keane and his dry wit, candid answers. He always packs a punch.”

Karl Duvall added: “Huge respect to Roy Keane. He’s a brilliant expert.’

Others were more focused on the former Manchester United star’s looks, with some social media accounts devoted entirely to the expert’s facial hair.

One Twitter user cheekily admitted, “Maybe I’m getting old, but Roy Keane looks good with his beard.”

Another added: ‘I’ve been carrying a secret. I’ve really come to appreciate Roy Keane in terms of sex. Think it’s the beard.

But not everyone has always enjoyed Keane’s spiky beard. Alf-Inge Haaland, the father of Manchester City striker Erling who saw his career end after a sickening tackle from Keane, once compared the Irishman’s facial hair to Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussain.

The ITV analyst was widely praised earlier in the tournament for his impassioned speech after Harry Kane and Gareth Bale pulled out and chose not to wear the OneLove bracelet in their opening matches.

The ITV analyst was widely praised earlier in the tournament for his impassioned speech after Harry Kane and Gareth Bale pulled out and chose not to wear the OneLove bracelet in their opening matches.

The ITV analyst was widely praised earlier in the tournament for his impassioned speech after Harry Kane and Gareth Bale pulled out and chose not to wear the OneLove bracelet in their opening matches.

The stalwart pundit also sensationally clashed with fellow midfielder Graeme Souness during Argentina's opening match against Saudi Arabia, leaving fans on social media in the lurch

The stalwart pundit also sensationally clashed with fellow midfielder Graeme Souness during Argentina's opening match against Saudi Arabia, leaving fans on social media in the lurch

The stalwart pundit also sensationally clashed with fellow midfielder Graeme Souness during Argentina’s opening match against Saudi Arabia, leaving fans on social media in the lurch

Keane was applauded by human rights groups after he condemned FIFA for controversially handing over the rights to host the 2010 World Cup

Keane was applauded by human rights groups after he condemned FIFA for controversially handing over the rights to host the 2010 World Cup

Keane was applauded by human rights groups after he condemned FIFA for controversially handing over the rights to host the 2010 World Cup

The ITV pundit was widely praised for his impassioned speech after Harry Kane and Gareth Bale backed out and chose not to wear the OneLove bracelet in their opening matches. that could be,” said Keane

ITV. “If it’s Kane, you risk a yellow card, but that would have been a nice statement.

“Do it before the first game, get your yellow card and what a message that would have been. Take your medicine and in the next game you continue.

“You don’t wear it because you don’t want to get suspended, but I think it was a big mistake because both players – Wales and England – should have stood their ground and done it.

“Regardless of outside pressures and associations, have the faith, if that’s what you believe, go with it.”

He also listed the ethical dilemma facing football-mad fans after leading the condemnation of FIFA’s decision to controversially give Qatar the rights to host the 2010 World Cup.

“The World Cup shouldn’t be here, you have a country and the way they treat migrant workers and gay people,” he said during pre-match remarks on Tuesday.

“We’re talking about spreading the game, but rejecting human rights, that’s not right. It shouldn’t be here.’

Several of Keane's admirers took to social media to praise the heartfelt pundit.  Female fans have also shared how they find the former Manchester United captain 'sexy' after he sharpened his shapely facial hair

Several of Keane's admirers took to social media to praise the heartfelt pundit.  Female fans have also shared how they find the former Manchester United captain 'sexy' after he sharpened his shapely facial hair

Several of Keane’s admirers took to social media to praise the heartfelt pundit. Female fans have also shared how they find the former Manchester United captain ‘sexy’ after he sharpened his shapely facial hair

Keane delighted viewers as he smashed Germany’s ‘schoolboy defence’ in their shock 2-1 defeat to Japan.

The former Republic of Ireland captain said: “If you conceded a goal like that in training you would stop and say, are you concentrating, are you doing it right?

‘It’s schoolboy who defends. Neuer almost made himself look smaller.’

The tough pundit also sensationally clashed with fellow midfielder Graeme Souness during Argentina’s opening match against Saudi Arabia.

The two slammed after Argentina were awarded an early penalty when Leandro Paredes appeared to be pulled to the ground by Mohamed Kanno.

Lionel Messi saved his penalty to take the game 1-0, but Souness and Keane, who are known for never conceding an inch, clashed in a moment fans have loved.

Speaking on ITV at half-time, Keane began the skirmish when he said: “I don’t think that’s a penalty.”

Souness hit back by claiming it should have been a penalty, as the Scot added: ‘He (the defender) is not looking at the ball.

“He doesn’t know where the ball is and is only interested in the Argentinian player. He doesn’t know when it was kicked, he doesn’t look – I think that’s a pen.’

Keane replied, ‘No no no! All this will do is encourage diving. He (Paredes) drags him (the defender) down.

Souness then said: ‘Roy, you’re not listening to what Laura (Woods – ITV presenter) said. This is a directive from referees, this is not about opinion, this is fact – the man wasn’t looking.’

Keane then furious: ‘I heard exactly what she said. This will encourage diving – I’m here to voice my opinion. That’s not a pen!’

What is the OneLove bracelet?

Nine countries, including England and Wales, planned to wear the OneLove bracelet for this year’s tournament.

The bracelet has its roots in the Netherlands and is designed to promote diversity and inclusion with football.

In 2021, Georginio Wijnaldum wore the bracelet during a European Championship match in Hungary with the permission of UEFA, the governing body of European football.

It is a white bracelet with a heart on it, accompanied by the words ‘One’ and ‘Love’.

The armband is designed to advocate for the rights of the LGBT+ community, alongside other marginalized groups within football, and to support equality for all.

While it has a core message related to the LGBT+ community, it is much more than that and represents a call to respect everyone’s human rights, regardless of age, race, sexual or gender identity, nationality or disability.

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