The idea of missing out on a return to Manchester United in the upcoming transfer window has left Burnley defender Michael Keane distraught.
According to a report in the Mirror, the Englishman is saddened by the prospect of not returning to Manchester United this summer. The Red Devils recently signed Victor Lindelof from Benfica, thereby ending any chance of Jose Mourinho making a summer swoop for the 24-year-old.
The Stockport born Keane, signed his first professional contract for the Red Devils in 2011 aged 18, and would go on to make only 5 appearances for them after which loan spells to Leicester City, Derby County, Blackburn Rovers and Burnley subsequently followed.
Burnley ultimately decided to sign him on a permanent basis in January 2015 after a successful 6 month loan spell. Keane signed a 3 and a half year deal with them and has since gone on to make over 100 appearances for them, which included helping them secure promotion in 2016.
Keane, 24, was an integral part of that defence that helped the Clarets secure top flight status for another season. Sean Dyche’s side men lost 20 League games last season, but only 6 of them at Turf Moor, and that superb record ultimately helped them secure an easy 15th placed finish.
Besides United, Keane’s impressive performances saw him court interest from the likes of Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Everton. He even made his England debut in March – a 1-0 defeat to Germany in a friendly at the Westfalenstadion.
Ronald Koeman’s side are said to be leading the race for the defender, but the Dutchman is waiting it out to assess his other options and their cross town rivals Liverpool haven’t made any attempts to sign him after reports of their interest surfaced earlier this season.
Keane is expected to cost around £25 million, a fee any of the aforementioned teams could easily match. He currently has a season left on his current contract, after which he would be allowed to leave for nothing next summer.
While it may seem like a huge loss to the Clarets, they reportedly feel that holding on to him for another season in order to help them keep their top flight status is far more important than the £25 million they will lose in this transfer window as a result.
Besides, a move to a bigger club would mean that Keane would likely have to compete with better players for a place in the starting XI. Irregular game time would significantly reduce his chances of making it into England’s 2018 World Cup squad and with that in mind, another season at Turf Moor would seem like the safest option for now.