John Collins has hit out at Roy Keane for claiming Nani deserved to be sent off during Manchester United’s defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League on Tuesday night.
Nani was shown straight a red card by Turkish referee Cuneyt Cakir in the second half of the last 16 clash, for what appeared to be an accidental kick on Real defender Alvaro Arbeloa.
United had been leading 1-0 at the time and Real went on to take full advantage of having the extra man, with goals from Luka Modric and Cristiano Ronaldo sealing their place in the quarter-finals.
Cakir’s decision to dismiss Nani infuriated United’s players and boss Sir Alex Ferguson, who was too distraught to speak to the media after the game, but won praise from the club’s former captain Keane.
Speaking on ITV, Keane, who famously fell out with Ferguson after leaving Old Trafford in 2005, said: “I think the referee has actually made the right call. Everyone's upset about it and it's slightly unlucky, but it's dangerous play.
"Whether he meant it or not is irrelevant. It's dangerous play - it's a red card. You have to be aware of other players on the pitch. Does he think he's going to have 20 yards to himself?
“Nani's a quick boy to go down anyway. He's not the bravest player on the planet.”
United fans have reacted furiously to the comments from Keane, who has been accused of bitterness over his departure from United, and Collins admits he was baffled by the Irishman’s stance.
The ex-Celtic, Everton and Monaco star told talkSPORT: “It was a shocking decision by the referee. I was really disappointed in Roy Keane, the way he came over last night.
“Any football player that watched that game can see Nani is only trying to do one thing and that’s pull the ball out of the air.
“I felt for the United players and I felt for the team and Sir Alex. If Roy Keane was on the pitch last night he would have been raging at the referee and calling him a cheat. That’s a fact.”