As far as Niall Quinn is concerned, Roy Keane left on good terms

It’s been a tough day for Sunderland fans who, having seen their side slip to six defeats in the past seven games, today watched on as Roy Keane threw in the towel on the club he managed for the past 100 games, leaving the Mackems managerless heading into the hectic Christmas period.

Taking into account the famed reclusive nature of Keane, it comes as no surprise that the Irishman has felt no need to explain to the media his reasons for leaving from the Stadium of Light. Rather, it was left to Black Cats’ chairman Niall Quinn to face the waiting journalists as he attempted to put a brave face on the unfolding events.

Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, Niall Quinn took the opportunity to clearly and unambiguously praise Roy Keane for his “winning mentality and single-mindedness” at Sunderland. Quinn made sure to stress that the split was amicable explaining “we tried to find a solution together for three days – one in the best interests of the club. In the end it’s an amicable agreement… Roy, as he says himself, is his harshest critic. He just felt he had completed his journey here and he just felt he didn’t want to get it unstuck any further and find ourselves in deeper, darker territory.”

However it is unlikely that Sunderland fans will all be so equally forgiving, with Keane walking out on the club third from bottom in the league, on the slide, £80 million poorer, and heading to Old Trafford on Saturday before taking on West Brom in a massive relegation six-pointer the following match.

Niall Quinn’s press conference can be seen here.