Sunday 22 April 2018

5 things about Michael Keane

Burnley's Michael Keane has been called up by England.
Burnley's Michael Keane has been called up by England.

Burnley's Michael Keane received his first England call-up as a replacement for the injured Glen Johnson, and will join the national squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Malta and Slovenia.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at five things you may not know about the 23-year-old defender.

1. He's a twin

Michael is one minute older than twin brother Will, and the pair came through the Manchester United ranks together. While Michael focused on his defensive duties, Will emerged as a striker and the pair have found themselves face to face on opposing teams on three occasions. Having twice crossed paths in the Championship, they met for the first time in the Premier League last month with Will coming on as a substitute for new club Hull at Turf Moor.

2. England is not his first international jersey

Although born in Stockport, Keane was initially persuaded to throw his lot in with the Republic of Ireland due family eligibility. He was capped at Under-17 and Under-19 level before making the decision to revert to the Three Lions. He was quickly drafted into the England Under-19 set-up and went on to appear at Under-20 and Under-21 level before earning his maiden senior summons on Tuesday.

3. MK Dons scuppered his Manchester United dreams

Having been on the books at Old Trafford from the age of 16 and impressed at every level, Keane was handed a Premier League debut by Louis van Gaal in August 2014. He played 46 minutes as a substitute in the 1-1 draw against Sunderland and got his starting chance in the League Cup game against MK Dons two days later. A Will Grigg-inspired Dons hammered the Red Devils 4-0 and Keane never played for the club again, with Burnley his next stop.

4. He knows his science

Keane was initially offered a part-time scholar's deal at United, meaning he spent as much time at college as he did at the training ground in his early years. Twin brother Will had a full-time contract but the arrangement worked out, with Michael earning creditable C grades in his physics, chemistry and biology A Levels.

5. He has bragging rights over England team-mate Jesse Lingard

The pair were both regulars for Manchester United reserves in 2012 and were nominated, alongside Larnell Cole, for the second string's Denzil Haroun player of the year of the award. Keane scooped the trophy with 60 per cent of the vote, joining past winners including Nicky Butt, John O'Shea and Darren Fletcher.

Press Association

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