Keane progressed through their youth ranks and made his professional debut aged 17 on 9 August 1997, scoring twice against Norwich City. The following season he excelled at the club, earning plaudits from both the press and Wolves manager Colin Lee. He went on to be the club's leading scorer, hitting the back of the net 16 times in the 1998-99 season. Keane's performances and goalscoring record with both Wolves and his national team attracted much interest from larger clubs and a move for the young striker seemed imminent given Wolves' finances. However, with three years left on his contract, Wolves sought a high price for their Irish starlet and managing director John Richards stated his reluctance to sell Keane unless their asking price was met.
In the 2003-04, Spurs battled with relegation, but Keane's goals played a major part in helping secure Tottenham's Premiership status. A hat-trick against Wolves and a last minute penalty to equalise in the North London derby against Arsenal were highlights as Keane once again ended the season as Tottenham's top scorer with 16 goals.
His third season, 2004-05, was more frustrating. Despite finishing with his highest return of goals in a season for Tottenham, 17, he played second-fiddle to the likes of Jermain Defoe, Fredi Kanoute and Mido for much of the season. The frustration culminated in Keane storming from the dugout towards the end of a game against Birmingham City in April 2005 after all the substitutes had been used, meaning he would not get a chance to appear. He was fined £10,000 and forced to train with the reserves after the outburst and his future at the club was thrown into doubt.
He knuckled down after this incident but the 2005-06 season started as the previous one had ended, with Defoe being preferred to partner Mido in Tottenham's strikeforce. However, Defoe's strike-rate continued to disappoint and Keane's persistence paid off in November when manager Martin Jol eventually gave Keane a chance to replace Defoe and stake his claim.
He grabbed the chance with both hands, started playing some of the best football of his career and by March had overtaken Mido as the top goalscorer at the club. Keane would go on to finish the season with 16 league goals - making him the Premier League's joint fourth top goalscorer that season. He had also been made the vice-captain, taking the captaincy on those occasions when Ledley King was not available.
He is a firm fans' favourite, and is regarded as a great professional. Hoddle once said of Keane's personality, "He's such a bubbly lad that anyone who meets him loves him. Edgar Davids and Keane were involved in a training ground fight in December 2005, but the pair subsequently made up publicly and were seen encouraging each other on the pitch.
In February 2006, Inter's owner and president, Massimo Moratti, admitted his regret at letting Keane go after being impressed by his performances at Tottenham. Keane extended his commitment to Totenham, signing a new four year contract in March 2006. Keane was named as one of ten Spurs squad members to be struck down by norovirus on 6 May 2006. However, he still managed to play in their final game of the season against West Ham United.
Keane had a slow start to the 2006-07 season which was further set back by a knee ligament injury that Keane suffered against Middlesbrough on 5 December 2006. His return from injury marked the beginning of a return to form and a lethal partnership with Dimitar Berbatov. Keane and Berbatov were jointly awarded the FA Premier League's Player of the Month Award for April 2007. Keane finished the season with a total of 22 goals in all competitions - the highest ever season tally of his career - scoring 15 goals in his last 15 appearances of the season.
Keane started in his 200th appearance for Tottenham in the final game of the 2006-07 Season against Manchester City scoring the first goal in a 2-1 victory that saw Tottenham secure 5th place in the league.
He signed a new five year contract with Tottenham on 28 May 2007. On 26 December 2007 he became the 13th player in the history of the league to score 100 Premiership goals. 2007 proved to be a remarkable year for the striker with a total of 31 goals and 13 assists from just 40 starts. His tally of 19 league goals in the calendar year was the highest of any player in the Premier League throughout 2007.
He scored his 100th competitive goal for Tottenham in the 2-0 win against Sunderland on 19 January 2008. He is the 15th Tottenham player to achieve this feat. On 24 February 2008 he won his first senior honour as a player as his Tottenham side won the first League Cup Final to be played at the new Wembley Stadium, beating Chelsea 2-1 after extra time. On 12 April 2008 Keane made his 250th appearance for Spurs in the 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough. Keane finished the 2007-08 season equal top scorer for Spurs with Berbatov, with 23 goals in all competitions. His 15 Premiership goals making him the first Spurs player to score double figures in the Premier League in 6 consecutive seasons. Keane in his Tottenham career won the player of year three times (2003-04, 2005-06 and 2007-08); the first player to do so.
His consistency and strike-rate attracted the attention of Premier League rivals Liverpool. Despite initial resistance to the sale and accusations of misconduct, Tottenham agreed to a £20.3 million deal for the player, allowing Keane to join the team he supported as a child,although he had pledged his career and love to Spurs just one month earlier
In his first interview as a Liverpool player, Keane expressed no regret over the move and revealed he would wear the number 7 shirt; a number previously worn by Liverpool heavyweights Kenny Dalglish and Kevin Keegan.
Keane scored his first goal for Liverpool on October 1 2008 in the team's Champions League win against PSV Eindhoven at Anfield. Notably, Steven Gerrard scored his 100th Liverpool goal in the same match.
He made his first senior appearance for the Republic of Ireland against the Czech Republic in Olomouc in March 1998, scoring his first senior goal against Malta in October that year. He won his 70th cap in the Republic's 5-0 defeat of San Marino, scoring a hat-trick along the way.
He was part of the 2002 World Cup campaign in South Korea and Japan, scoring three goals in the Republic of Ireland's four games. Keane scored an injury-time equaliser against Germany in the 2002 World Cup; the only goal to be scored against Germany in the competition until the final. He also scored a last-minute equaliser against Spain from a penalty kick.
Although the Republic of Ireland failed to qualify for the 2006 World Cup, Keane scored four goals in the Republic's eight matches and remains their most prolific goalscorer.
Following Steve Staunton's appointment as the manager of the Republic of Ireland, Keane was appointed captain. In their first game under Staunton, Keane scored the second goal in the 3-0 victory against Sweden at Lansdowne Road, and celebrated the final match at the Lansdowne Road stadium, against San Marino, with a hat trick. Giovanni Trapattoni, who took over from Staunton, confirmed his confidence in Keane's leadership by handing him the captain's armband ahead of the Republic of Ireland's match against Serbia on 24 May 2008 which ended in a 1-1 draw. On 29 May 2008 Robbie Keane scored his 33rd international goal in their 1-0 victory over Columbia at Craven Cottage in London, which he subsequently dedicated to his friend Georgios Samaras.
Under the new management of Trapattoni, Robbie Keane has been identified as the spearhead of the Republic of Ireland attack and Trapattoni compared Robbie Keane to Italian goalscoring playmaker Francesco Totti due to his position behind the striker and his intelligent link up play. Keane is the Republic's top goalscorer at international level; his 34 goals in 82 games surpasses Niall Quinn's record of 21.
Keane claimed in a television interview that he would only bring the celebration back should Spurs win the League Cup, a feat they achieved on 24 February 2008 in a sensational 2-1 Victory against Chelsea at Wembley Stadium. However, this claim never came to fruition as Keane was not amongst the scorers that day.
Upon scoring his first goal for Liverpool on October 1 2008, Keane resurrected the celebration.
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|Wolves (First Division)||1997-98||38||11||3||0||4||0||45||11|
|Premier League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|Coventry City (Premier League)||1999–2000||31||12||3||0||34||12|
|Serie A||Coppa Italia||-||Europe||Total|
|Premier League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|Leeds United (Premier League)||2000–01||18||9||2||0||20||9|
|Tottenham Hotspur (Premier League)||2002–03||29||13||1||0||2||0||32||13|
|Liverpool (Premier League)||2008–09||6||0||1||0||3||1||10||1|
|1998-10-14||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||5-0||UEFA Euro 2000 qualifying||2 (2)|
|1999-09-01||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-1||UEFA Euro 2000 qualifying||1 (3)|
|1999-09-08||Ta' Qali Stadium, Mdina||3-2||UEFA Euro 2000 qualifying||1 (4)|
|1999-11-13||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||1-1||UEFA Euro 2000 qualifying||1 (5)|
|2001-11-10||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-0||Friendly match||1 (6)|
|2000-09-02||Amsterdam ArenA, Amsterdam||2-2||2002 FIFA World Cup qualification||1 (7)|
|2001-11-10||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-0||2002 FIFA World Cup qualification||1 (8)|
|2002-02-13||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-0||Friendly match||1 (9)|
|2002-03-27||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||3-0||Friendly match||1 (10)|
|2002-06-05||Kashima Stadium, Kashima, Ibaraki||1-1||2002 FIFA World Cup||1 (11)|
|2002-06-11||International Stadium of Yokohama, Yokohama||3-0||2002 FIFA World Cup||1 (12)|
|2002-06-16||Suwon Big Bird Stadium, Suwon||1-1||2002 FIFA World Cup||1 (13)|
|2002-08-21||Helsinki Olympic Stadium, Helsinki||3-0||Friendly match||1 (14)|
|2003-06-07||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-1||UEFA Euro 2004 qualifying||1 (15)|
|2003-06-11||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-0||UEFA Euro 2004 qualifying||1 (16)|
|2003-11-18||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||3-0||Friendly match||2 (18)|
|2004-03-31||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-1||Friendly match||1 (19)|
|2004-06-05||Amsterdam ArenA, Amsterdam||1-0||Friendly match||1 (20)|
|2004-09-04||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||3-0||2006 FIFA World Cup qualification||1 (21)|
|2004-10-13||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-0||2006 FIFA World Cup qualification||2 (23)|
|2004-11-16||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||1-0||Friendly match||1 (24)|
|2005-06-04||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||2-2||2006 FIFA World Cup qualification||1 (25)|
|2006-03-01||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||3-0||Friendly match||1 (26)|
|2006-11-15||Landsdowne Road, Dublin||5-0||UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying||3 (29)|
|2007-08-22||NRGi Park, Aarhus||4-0||Friendly match||2 (31)|
|2007-11-17||Millennium Stadium,Cardiff||2-2||UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying||1 (32)|
|2008-05-29||Craven Cottage, London||1-0||Friendly match||1 (33)|
|2008-08-20||Ullevaal Stadium, Oslo||1-1||Friendly match||1 (34)|
Keane Has Atlast Got the Look of Real Leader; Character: Liverpool's Robbie Keane Back in the Team and Back on the Scoresheet against Bolton Picture: AP
Dec 29, 2008; Byline: SHANE McGRATH AS WE burp out the last of the good-time-indigestion and become nostalgic for the days when...
Robbie Keane is a powerful reminder just now that professional football is a game, fundamentally, about illusion.
Jan 27, 2009; Robbie Keane is a powerful reminder just now that professional football is a game, fundamentally, about illusion. His current...