‘It’s good to play up front with someone’ - Keane wants to team up with Quaner for derby
PUBLISHED: 11:55 05 February 2019
© Copyright Stephen Waller
Will Keane believes he can form a potent strike partnership with fellow Ipswich Town new boy Collin Quaner.
The duo – signed on loan from Hull and Huddersfield respectively this month – were paired together from the start for the games against Rotherham (1-0 home win) and Blackburn (2-0 away loss), Keane playing just off Quaner.
Keane subsequently looked isolated when leading the line on his own in the 2-1 defeat at Villa, with Quaner impressing as his direct replacement off the bench on the hour mark.
The reverse was true in Saturday’s 1-0 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday, Quaner feeding off scraps before Keane replaced him after 55 minutes to liven up the action.
Rock-bottom Town cross the Norfolk border to take on table-topping rivals Norwich City at Carrow Road on Sunday (12pm ko) with 39 points separating the sides in the standings.
“I feel like I can do the nine or the 10 role – I’ve done that throughout my career,” said the quick-footed former Manchester United youngster Keane.
“The first couple of games I felt like I was getting joy in the No.10 role, then at Aston Villa I was playing as the No.9 and probably didn’t get as much service. Playing (as the lone striker) away from home can be a tough role.”
He added: “One of my best attributes is getting the ball in and around my feet and being able to link up the play. The manager is massive on that. It’s nice to be given the freedom to go and play.”
Quaner has played the majority of his football on the wing for Huddersfield, but insists his best role is as the central striker.
“I feel like I linked up well with him in the first two games,” said Keane. “He’s an intelligent player and I feel like we bounce off each other well.
“It’s good to play up front with someone and share the load. He is a physical presence and is a good outlet for us.”
Asked if Town’s plight hurt the loan players as much as those contracted beyond next season, Keane – who has been contacted by former Blues boss Mick McCarthy about a Republic of Ireland call-up – added: “Definitely. I’m giving everything I can. At the end of the day my career is on the line just like any player. I’m coming here to give everything for the cause.
“If the team does well that’s going to reflect well on me. I know I’ve got to give everything I can to help the club try and stay in the Championship.”