Keane rejected Savage at eleventh hour because of annoying voicemail message

The story of how Manchester United icon Roy Keane shelved a move for Robbie Savage during his managerial stint at Sunderland due to an annoying voicemail message has re-emerged.

Keane had his eyes on swooping for the Welsh midfielder back in 2008 when Keane was in charge at the Stadium of Light.

He revealed that he even went as far as sounding out Savage's boss at Blackburn, Mark Hughes, to get the green light to speak to the midfielder about a move.

But Keane was put off by after hearing Savage's Budweiser-inspired outgoing voicemail message.

Keane revealed in his autobiography: “I rang Mark Hughes. Robbie [Savage] wasn’t in the Blackburn team and I asked Mark if we could try to arrange a deal.

“Sparky said, ‘Yeah, yeah he’s lost his way here but he could still do a job for you’.

“Robbie’s legs were going a bit but I thought he might come up to us [at Sunderland] with his long hair, and give us a lift – the way [Dwight Yorke] Yorkie had, a big personality in the dressing room.

“Sparky gave me permission to give him a call. So I got Robbie’s mobile number and rang him.

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“It went to his voicemail, ‘Hi it’s Robbie – whazzup!’ like the Budweiser ad.

“I never called him back. I thought: ‘I can’t be f***ing signing that’.”

After Keane's book was published, Savage himself saw the funny side and fired back at Keane with a tongue-in-cheek post on social media over the incident.

Savage, who is now director of football at non-league Macclesfield Town, tweeted: “Oh come on Roy whattttsupppppppp!!! Hahahaha.

“Whether or not Roy did try and sign me I chose Derby over Sunderland as they offered me more and I didn’t want to move house.

“But it’s great to know Roy Keane obviously liked me as a player as he was one of (the) best midfielders ever!! #whatssuppppppp.”

After Keane's snub, Savage went on to seal a £1.5million switch to Derby County in January 2008.

Derby, who were relegated from the Premier League just six months after Savage's arrival, proved to be the 47-year-old's final club after he hung up his boots whilst still on the books at Pride Park back in 2011.

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