West Ham’s Michail Antonio Hits Back at Roy Keane’s Criticism of Footballers’ Podcasts

West Ham striker Michail Antonio has fired back at Manchester United legend Roy Keane’s recent criticism of footballers hosting podcasts, labeling it as a “dinosaur mentality.”

Keane, speaking on the Stick To Football podcast, expressed concerns that podcasts could be a distraction for players, especially following defeats, suggesting that they should maintain a serious focus on football.

Antonio, who co-hosts the BBC Sounds Footballer’s Football Podcast, refuted Keane’s comments in the latest episode, highlighting the evolving landscape of professional football and the multifaceted interests of modern players.

The 34-year-old challenged the notion that footballers should solely prioritize the sport, arguing that contemporary players are capable of balancing their footballing commitments with other endeavors, such as business ventures, fashion, and creative pursuits like music.

Antonio emphasized the importance of mental well-being, criticizing the expectation that players should dwell on defeats for extended periods, which he believes contributes to mental health struggles among athletes. He shared his personal experience of driving home in silence after a loss, consumed by thoughts of the game.

His co-host, Fulham’s Tom Cairney, echoed Antonio’s sentiments, highlighting the increased professionalism of modern players compared to past eras. Cairney acknowledged the challenges of speaking after a defeat but emphasized the changing landscape of football, with social media providing a platform for players to engage with fans and express themselves.

Antonio and Cairney’s responses reflect a broader shift in attitudes toward footballers’ off-field activities and mental health awareness within the sport.

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