Tino arrived at a time when the league seemed to be in the bag, but the "last piece of the jigsaw" didn't quite work.
Personally I thought the Colombian was superb, but his strike partner Les Ferdinand admitted he struggled to adapt to Tino's pattern of play. They were never on the same wavelength and the team suffered.
Keegan said today that transfer at this time of year are a risk, and "are not usually successful", as was the case with Tino.
However, with the squad short in numbers, his hand is being forced. And he is looking for a vocal figure at the center of the defence, just as he did when he took over the club back in the early 1990s.
Kevin Kilcline was signed and he made the difference between relegation and safety.
Keegan: "I'm not thinking of bringing Kevin Kilcline back, much as I like him.
"But if I'm honest, they just need somebody to talk to them more middle to back.
"Steven Taylor will be a real leader and already he's got leadership qualities. But if you look to the side of him you've got players new to the Premier League.
"I think we are a club who can go and get big players if they are the right players.
"That's absolutely 100%. We have to look at the situation in reality. A lot of players don't move at this time of year. If they do it usually hasn't been that successful.
"We will be trying to fetch two or three players in but we will not fetch them in just to make the numbers up.
"They've got to be players who can play with what we've got and improve what we've got. But it's no good collecting players. All the players here are useful to us."
1996/98 F.H.H.Asprilla 50/12 18
Tino will long be remembered for his hat-trick against Barcelona in the Champions League, but unjustly blamed for costing United the Premier title in 1996 after the team was 12 points clear of Man U at one stage. Signed from Parma. Born in Tula Valle in Colombia. Colombian international. Returned to Parma when he left Newcastle and there was a period when he almost joined Darlington, but spoilt his chances when he asked Darlo chairman George Reynoulds if he "had a big cock?" because he was married to a woman almost half his age.