WIGAN Athletic are standing by their stance to reject entry to former Manchester United captain Roy Keane at a recent home game.
The Irishman, who won the league seven times with the Red Devils, was not only denied a ticket to the recent game against Arsenal but also a season ticket at the DW Stadium.
Keane talked about the incident in an interview with the Sunday Times. He had already watched Wigan’s draw with Blackburn but was told he couldn’t pay on the day for the Arsenal game because it was a higher category fixture.
When he was refused a ticket, he offered to pay for a season ticket and was told this was not possible due to him not being on Wigan’s database.
In the end, security had to remove him as he vented his fury.
He said: “I was down to Wigan when they played Blackburn. I went to the woman at the window and said, ‘Can I buy a ticket?’ and I handed over my £20. Good value, I thought.
“Watched the game, enjoyed it, pie at half-time, six goals, no one recognised me, didn’t have to make small talk, good day.”
When Keane returned for the Arsenal game, he was served by the same woman. He added: “She said this was a different category game and she needed my details. I gave my name and address.
“‘You’re not on the system,’ she said. ‘I know,’ I said. ‘But I bought a ticket two weeks ago and you said it was OK’.
“‘That was for Blackburn,’ she said. ‘OK,’ I said, ‘I’ll buy a season ticket’.
“She said it wasn’t possible. ‘You’re not on the system’. And I said, ‘I think your club is £37m in debt and you don’t want my money’.”
But the club has backed the ticket office, saying that the rules are there for a reason – to prevent visiting supporters gaining access to the home end. A spokesman said: “The database is there for a reason and on police advice. If Mr Keane had left his details the first time or rang us in the week, there wouldn’t have been a problem.
“We’re sure Mr Keane will understand and he would be welcome to visit the ground for future matches.”
Read Roberto Martinez’ view on the incident in this week’s Wigan Observer ...