On loan Manchester United defender Michael Keane has revealed that he is gutted by the fact that he left the club to get more first-team opportunities, only for them to open up at Old Trafford in his absence.
The 21-year-old, who moved to Burnley on a season-long loan in order to continue his development this term, was quoted by local paper the Lancashire Telegraph as admitting that his current situation was hard to take, what with Louis van Gaal’s United suffering a defensive crisis.
A disappointing move
Though the likes of Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo were always going to be sitting ahead of him in the pecking order at his parent club, Keane has patiently waited for game-time at Burnley as his former teammates have fallen by the wayside.
Van Gaal has even been forced to call upon fellow academy graduates Paddy McNair and Tyler Blackett, with Michael Carrick also having been used as a centre-back to cope with the loss of personnel.
What makes Keane’s switch to the Clarets even more regrettable is the fact that prior to Burnley’s clash with Aston Villa at the weekend he hadn’t even started a game for the club, and only 20 minutes had been afforded to him through substitute appearances.
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“I know I would have got games there but it’s just one of those things,” Keane said.
“I’m obviously gutted about that but I have to just focus on what I am doing at Burnley.
"I’m obviously gutted about that but I have to just focus on what I am doing at Burnley"
“While I am disappointed the main thing for me is to play games, I would have been doing that at United but there was nothing I could do to get back there so the second best thing is to be playing here.”
Whether not Keane will retain his spot in the heart of Sean Dyche’s defence for the upcoming clash with Newcastle, having helped them draw against Paul Lambert’s Villa 1-1, remains to be seen. The chances are though that he will be more inclined to be thinking about the future, and his return to United at the end of the season.
By that time the landscape may have greatly changed, with Van Gaal said to be considering moves for a number of targets, including more than one centre-back, in the January transfer window.
Borussia Dortmund star Mats Hummels is a name commonly bandied around when the Red Devils’ back-line is discussed, and the likes of Ryan Shawcross and Ron Vlaar have also been mentioned as viable candidates.
It could transpire that no new purchases are made in the New Year, which will help Keane’s cause no end, but that would almost certainly leave United fans questioning how Van Gaal expects to get by with the talent he currently has at his disposal.