Kevin Keegan: ‘No, I’m not going to take a compliment from Mike Ashley’

The former England captain shares memories of Bobby Moore and George Best, his regrets about managing Newcastle and England and why if he was a player today he’d like to turn out for Jürgen Klopp’s Liverpool

You can feel the energy as soon as Kevin Keegan walks into the room – barrel chest, big biceps, warm smile, small man, tough handshake. His hair is white these days, the perm long gone, and his belly more rounded, but otherwise he is little changed. Keegan is as passionate and outspoken as he ever was.

We meet in a hotel in Manchester. It’s funny that he’s written another memoir, he says, because he hates looking back. “I don’t like player reunions because all you get is the lads talking about whatever year you won something. A lot of them are just lost in that. Sir John Hall had a saying: ‘If you live in the past, you die in the past.’ You’ve got to reinvent yourself – try to move on.”

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via Football | The Guardian

Frank Lampard prepares Derby for meeting with mentor José Mourinho | Simon Burnton

The Rams’ manager, still close to his former Chelsea boss, believes the Portuguese’s influence shines as brightly as ever

Frank Lampard remembers watching the press conference in 2004 at which José Mourinho, freshly arrived at Chelsea, announced that he was “a special one”. He says: “I saw it and I liked it. It was something different. British culture is not to walk in and call yourself the special one, I don’t think. That’s the way he was and I admired him for it and actually, if you make those statements, you had better back them up, and he certainly did.”

If many people believe Mourinho’s aura has started to fade, Lampard is not one of them. The Portuguese remains, in the eyes of his former midfielder, as special as ever. “When you’re the manager of Manchester United, when you have the CV and the background of José Mourinho – and this is not ancient history, this is fresh history, the Europa League, the FA Cup – then of course you have it,” he says. “In terms of the special one and that, those are just words. In terms of being a great manager, of course he is.”

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via Football | The Guardian

West Ham need to secure Declan Rice’s signature, says Pablo Zabaleta

• Dressing room needs to keep his feet on ground, Zabaleta says
• Teenage Hammers midfielder holds out for £30k a week

Pablo Zabaleta has urged West Ham to prioritise securing Declan Rice to a new contract following the teenager’s hugely impressive start to the season.

Rice has operated in defensive midfield over recent weeks and contributed heavily to the win at Everton and encouraging draw at home against Chelsea on Sunday which have lifted West Ham from the foot of the league table. Manuel Pellegrini heaped praise on the youngster’s performance in that derby, yet Rice has entered the final 12 months of his deal having rejected a new offer over the summer.

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via Football | The Guardian