Transfer Rumour: Manchester United to compete with Chelsea FC for former defender Michael Keane

Manchester United are reportedly considering a move for Burnley defender Michael Keane, who is currently linked with a move to Chelsea.


According to ESPN sources, Manchester United are considering a move for their former youth product Michael Keane. The Burnley centre-back has really come into his own after completing his move from Manchester United and has been a revelation for the Clarets.

Michael Keane was one of the catalysts of Burnley’s rise from the Championship and the United academy product seems to have carried his form into the Premier League. The 23-year-old has been ever-present for Burnley this season, having played each and every minute of their campaign thus far. His form was rewarded by England manager Gareth Southgate, who selected him in the national team squad during the previous international break.

Chelsea have been strongly linked with a move for the former Manchester United defender in recent times. The Red Devils made a very expensive mistake with Paul Pogba and will want to avoid a repetition of that with Keane. Although they have already sold him to the Clarets, buying him back will be considerably less difficult before any potential moves to a top Premier League club like Chelsea.

On course for a reunion? (Picture Courtesy - AFP/Getty Images)
On course for a reunion? (Picture Courtesy – AFP/Getty Images)

While Chelsea’s defence looks sorted for now with Antonio Conte’s side having not conceded a goal in the previous five Premier League matches, Manchester United are having some serious problems at the back.

Jose Mourinho has, so far, only shown full trust in new signing Eric Bailly, who is now out for at least another month. That leaves the Portuguese manager with Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Daley Blind as the only senior options at the centre of the defence.

While Phil Jones has completed his recovery and started against Swansea last weekend, there are still doubts over the player’s ability to stay fit for an extended period of time. Also, Smalling and Blind have both had their fair share of defensive howlers against Chelsea and Manchester City respectively.

Faced with this lack of depth, the Red Devils are now considering a move for their academy graduate, who has been extremely impressive at the heart of Burnley’s defence. Earlier reports stated that Chelsea were preparing a £25m bid and it is unlikely that Burnley would consider offers for an amount lower than that.

Ready for a Red return? (Picture Courtesy - AFP/Getty Images)
Ready for a Red return? (Picture Courtesy – AFP/Getty Images)

However, Manchester United could secure a transfer for a relatively low fee considering a 20% sell-on clause was included in his contract during the time of sale. The Red Devils could save as much as £5m and sign their former player for just £20m.

Michael Keane could also be tempted to follow in Pogba’s footsteps and return to his boyhood club to be a part of United’s resurgence under Jose Mourinho. The Portuguese has already impressed upon his players the importance of showing passion for the shirt and committing to the club’s cause. Bringing back a player who came through the club’s ranks could help greatly in that respect.

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