Monday 24 April 2017

Burnley's Michael Keane 'flattered' by Liverpool and Everton interest

England's Michael Keane applauds fans after the match
England's Michael Keane applauds fans after the match

Jack Austin

England new-boy Michael Keane has admitted he is “flattered” by the reported interest in him from Merseyside rivals Everton and Liverpool in the wake of his international debut.

Keane made his first appearance for the Three Lions in the 1-0 friendly defeat to Germany on Wednesday night in Dortmund and was impressive alongside Gary Cahill and Chris Smalling in a defensive back three.

The 24-year-old has turned his career around after being allowed to leave Manchester United 2015 and was a key fixture in helping Burnley back into the top flight and establishing themselves as they currently sit 13th in the Premier League.

As well as the Merseyside duo, Chelsea, Leicester City and Manchester City are all keeping tabs on Keane with Burnley bracing themselves for a number of summer bids for him, but the centre back insisted he is focused on the remained of the season with the Clarets.

“It's flattering to see, but I'm focused on Burnley,” Keane said. “We've got nine games left in the season and we need to make sure we remain in the league.

“But to see things like that can only mean you're playing well.”

Keane went through the academy at Manchester United with his twin brother Will, who is joined Hull from the Red Devils in the summer, and admitted he never expected to leave the club but praised current manager Sean Dyche for helping with his development.

“I always thought, personally, that I was going to make it at United,” he added. “A few changes in managers didn't help, so when I left, I felt like I had a point to prove.

“If anything [leaving United] made me work that bit harder. I'm thankful to [manager] Sean Dyche at Burnley for the work he's done with me and the faith he's put in me - that's what has got me to where I am today.”

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