Blow for Keane as Warnock adds Kidd to Blades staff

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The Independent Football

Brian Kidd, the former Manchester United and England coach, last night agreed to join Neil Warnock's staff at Sheffield United, thus disappointing Roy Keane, who hoped to attract him to Sunderland.

Kidd was Sir Alex Ferguson's No 2 at Old Trafford for many of the glory years and worked with Sven Goran Eriksson at national level. This is his first coaching job since winning a battle with cancer.

Warnock said: "I'm absolutely delighted to get Kiddo. I've been working on him for six weeks. He is just the sort of person we need."

Kidd's arrival does not affect Stuart McCall's position as Warnock's No 2, nor his other coaching staff. "He's just an extra body and brain," Warnock said, "a very good and very experienced one. The demands upon me now we are in the Premiership have meant sometimes Stuart has been talking to 26 players on his own. That's too much for anyone. We needed to bring someone in and who could be better than someone who has seen it all and done it all? Brian has worked with the best, he has a great rapport with players and our lads, and the other staff, will enjoy working with him."

Kidd, 57, began his coaching career at Barrow in 1984 after an 18-year playing career in which the highlight was scoring on his 19th birthday to help Manchester United win the European Cup in 1968. He briefly managed Preston before returning to United as a youth coach in 1988. He stepped up to be Ferguson's assistant three years later and remained at the club until becoming manager of Blackburn Rovers in December 1998. This led to a souring of his relations with Ferguson, who appeared to view his departure from Old Trafford as desertion and castigated Kidd in his autobiography.

He lasted a year at Rovers but soon returned to coaching with Leeds United. Then, in 2003, he was made England No 2. Kidd had to step down shortly before Euro 2004 when diagnosed with prostate cancer. Since his return to health several clubs had been linked with him, notably Keane after his arrival on Wearside.

l Dietmar Hamann is set to make his debut for Manchester City at Reading tonight, when Stuart Pearce's men take on the side managed by former City boss Steve Coppell.