Everton are reportedly deemed favourites in the pursuit of England international Michael Keane following Manchester United’s decision to sign Victor Lindelof from Benfica. The Burnley defender was initially touted as a potential option to bolster the Red Devils’ defense, but Jose Mourinho opted for a deal for Lindelof instead due to his additional international exposure.

According to The Mail, the Toffees hold a significant advantage in the race for the central defender after manager Ronald Koeman openly admitted his admiration for the player earlier in the season. Keane played a key role in the Clarets’ defence which came up triumphs via their home league form last term, and the club are not necessarily in a hurry to sell their asset despite him approaching the final year of his contract.

Nevertheless, the prospect of losing out on a £25m could be hard to handle, and the Clarets are looking at potential offers with Liverpool and Everton keen on the former Old Trafford graduate. Keane has made significant strides towards his World Cup ambition in his short stint with Burnley after he earned his debut cap for England against Germany earlier in March.

A potential £25m sale would garner former club United with a decent package after they managed to attach a 25 percent sell-on clause to his contract while departing for Turf Moor in January 2015. Keane was an ever-present for the Lancashire outfit during the previously campaign as they stayed clear of the drop via their home run.

Such records do not replicate themselves and the Clarets will have a tough task on hand, if they are to maintain their top-flight status next season, be it with or without the presence of Keane in their defence. Keane initially joined the Clarets on a temporary stint in the summer of 2014 before United agreed to cash in on his services for a mere £2m few months later.

Image – Getty


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