Jol says Keane is happy to stay at Spurs

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The Independent Online

Martin Jol, the Tottenham Hotspur head coach, insisted yesterday that Robbie Keane still has a future at the club despite his show of petulance during last weekend's Premiership draw with Birmingham City.

Martin Jol, the Tottenham Hotspur head coach, insisted yesterday that Robbie Keane still has a future at the club despite his show of petulance during last weekend's Premiership draw with Birmingham City.

Keane, the Republic of Ireland's leading goalscorer, has started four of Tottenham's last 12 games and stormed down the tunnel when Jol introduced Mido from the bench in the second half. Keane was fined £10,000, sparking rumours he would leave the club in the summer.

But Jol played down the significance of Keane's fine and insisted he had not been banished to train with the youth team.

"Have you seen our fines list?" he asked. "We have a code of conduct for everything, even for things like coming in late. If you don't do that there will be anarchy at the club. It is a normal thing.

"He was upset because he didn't come on. I would normally put him on, especially at home, but this situation was different. We have had a chat. Nothing is more important than the club and he knows that. It is important we stay strong as a unit and that is why I don't like it when players step out of line. But we dealt with that and he looked fresh again today in training.

"It is not about him accepting my decision to put him on the bench. He was a bit emotional but he never causes me a problem. It is one of those things. He is a good player so there are always clubs interested in him but I don't think there will be any changes because of this incident.

"I think he is happy to stay at Spurs. He knows he is an important player for us. He has been involved in a lot of games for us this season, more than Frédi Kanouté, and he is productive for us."

Tomorrow Tottenham face Newcastle, who have also had internal difficulties in the last week, after the fight between Lee Bowyer and Kieron Dyer.

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