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Mowbray - Keane circus not a distraction
Published : 03 Feb 2010 07:54:02
Tony Mowbray insisted the circus surrounding Robbie Keane's arrival did not distract his Celtic side as his reign hit a new low at Kilmarnock.
Keane's debut for his boyhood idols went spectacularly awry as Killie ended their 31-match winless streak against the Hoops and handed Jimmy Calderwood his first Clydesdale Bank Premier League win in charge. Celtic's defeat, their 11th in 36 games since Mowbray arrived last summer, left the Parkhead club 10 points behind arch-rivals Rangers in the title race.
Keane's unveiling at midnight on transfer deadline day brought thousands of delirious fans to Parkhead to welcome him, but when asked if Keane's fevered reception had adversely affected his players, Mowbray said: "I don't think so, I thought he played well."
He added: "He brings a different dimension to our team. At times, he made the team tick by positions he takes up on the pitch.
"I'm sure he'll be a huge benefit for us as we move on."
Keane was Mowbray's eighth signing of the transfer window, four of whom played on Tuesday night.
Mowbray refused to plead for time for the new arrivals to click.
"I wouldn't call for patience," he said. "I think the team has got to gel as quickly as it can."