He's opinionated, arrogant and, at times, petulant. He wears his heart on his sleeve and has passion to spare. He could be just what the Vancouver Whitecaps need to make a splash in Major League Soccer.
The race for Robbie Keane's signature is officially underway. Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has admitted the Irish striker is surplus to requirements and will be allowed to leave Spurs during the January transfer window.
His impending departure will surprise no one. Keane has been this way before, perhaps more times than he cares to remember. In a professional career spanning 13 years, the 30-year-old Dubliner has played for seven different clubs.
A travellin' man
His list of employers is about to get longer. The news of Keane's availability will alert a host of clubs eager to entice him to another new home. His nomadic tendencies may deter some, but game changers will always find a place to play.
Aston Villa and Fulham are just two Premiership clubs believed to be keen on Keane. Gerard Houllier badly needs a proven goal scorer in the absence of John Carew and Emile Heskey. Michael Owen may also be on his shortlist in the January sales.
It would be no surprise if Mark Hughes went after Keane. The Fulham boss will identify with Keane's on-field persona. A generation ago 'Sparky' himself was a vocal, combative goal poacher - very different from the apparently mild mannered coach we know today.
Robbie Keane is a fighter. He takes no prisoners on a football field. He's not interested in making friends - his sole focus is on getting the job done and winning the battle. His aggressive attitude is infectious and makes him a hit with the fans.
It can also get him into trouble. His infamous training ground brawl with former Dutch international Edgar Davids in 2005 was officially seen as "a sign of the players' passion and commitment." Davids was nicknamed "The Pitbull" for a reason.
Keane is a fearless competitor who believes his should be the first name on the team sheet. As a result, his abortive 'dream move' to Liverpool was doomed to failure. He never bought into the policy of squad rotation and frustration got the better of him.
A dissatisfied Keane is not good for dressing-room morale. When Redknapp could no longer guarantee him a place in the Spurs starting lineup, he shipped him to Scotland. Sixteen games and 12 goals later Keane was voted Player of the Year by Celtic fans.
The link, real or perceived, between Keane and the Whitecaps is easy to trace.
Vancouver's chief executive Paul Barber will know him well from Barber's days at White Hart Lane, while part-owner Steve Nash is a huge Spurs fan who considered buying a stake in the team.
The Whitecaps have talked openly about the possibility of signing a Designated Player. The franchise has refused to discuss the details of any such move but the likely timing of Keane's departure from Tottenham would be ideal.
The Whitecaps' inaugural MLS training camp will open in February, which would give Keane, the habitual traveller, time to adjust to his new surroundings. He's used to moving, but Keane has only once before ventured overseas.
A decade ago he spent a short spell in Italy with Inter Milan. The transfer didn't work out after coach Marcello Lippi was fired, leaving Keane in limbo. The question is this: could Keane be persuaded to take on this challenge?
The money would not be an issue. The Vancouver ownership group has extremely deep pockets and its long-term mission statement vows to make the franchise one of the "top 25 clubs in the world." Signing Robbie Keane as its first DP would certainly be a credible first step.
Keane will be, of course, tempted to stay put. There will be offers from Premier League rivals while Celtic fans would welcome him back with open arms if the Scottish giants can afford him on a permanent basis.
But if Ireland's all-time record goal scorer is ready to embrace the biggest change of his career, he should come to Canada. He'll love Vancouver and he'll hate MLS referees.
It may seem farfetched, but let's face it - stranger things have happened. Qatar 2022, anyone?
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