Home » Michael Keane: I had to leave Manchester United for Burnley to play regularly

Michael Keane: I had to leave Manchester United for Burnley to play regularly

by Robbie Dunne

Former Manchester United defender Michael Keane has insisted he has no regrets about leaving Old Trafford.

Keane joined Man United when he was just 11 years old but his opportunities were limited at the club and he opted to join Burnley in January of last year in search of regular first-team football.

The 22-year-old joins a long list of United academy players who have left the club in recent times including Tom Thorpe and Danny Welbeck.

However, Keane admitted he had to leave to continue his development.

Louis van Gaal 35

“I have no regrets about leaving United for Burnley. I could have hung around at United and got a chance as, around the time I left, a few centre-halves got injured and that meant I might have played then so that was a bit frustrating,” he said.

“But once I accepted it and started playing regularly in the Premier League with Burnley that is all I wanted to do rather than sit on the bench at United.

“Burnley are a great club and I feel playing regularly has helped me a lot and that I have improved a lot as a player during my time here.”

It is always difficult to break into a Premier League side’s first XI. It looked as though Louis van Gaal would give plenty of young players a chance upon his arrival having given Tyler Blackett and Paddy McNair chances during his first season in charge.


There is a growing worry, however, that this was due to the injury crisis that United suffered last term.

The other side of the coin is that if a player is not good enough then a move away is the best option for all parties involved. The problem with this is that many players grow at different ages and United don’t want to be seen to give up on player too early in their development.

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