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Man United agreed on a move for this Everton star before going for £31m deal

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Manchester United could have signed Michael Keane instead of Victor Lindelof

According to the Athletic, Manchester United were close to securing Michael Keane before signing Victor Lindelof for £31m.

The Red Devils were keen on bringing in a central defender in the summer of 2017. Ed Woodward was exploring the possibility of bringing back former starlet Keane.

The 27-year-old was coming on the back of a fine 2016/17 campaign for Burnley. His performances saw him get nominated for the PFA Young Player of the Year award.

Manchester United preferred to sign Victor Lindelof over Michael Keane
Manchester United preferred to sign Victor Lindelof over Michael Keane

Keane joined United in 2004 from South Manchester Juniors. He progressed through the youth ranks but could not establish himself in the first-team. He eventually left for Burnley in 2014, having made just 5 appearances for United.

The defender joined the Clarets initially on loan before penning a permanent deal the next summer. He went on to make 108 appearances for Burnley and established himself as a promising defender in the top-flight and the Championship.

A return to United looked to be on the cards, with the player also agreeing to personal terms with then boss Jose Mourinho. However, the move failed to materialize after the Portuguese tactician turned his attentions to Lindelof.

Keane spent 10 years at United

According to the report, the United staff were split in their decision to sign Keane. He eventually ended up at Everton that summer. The player too has spoken of his preference to move to Everton, with the Toffees guaranteeing him more game time.

The wrong decision?

Despite landing Lindelof, United attempted to rekindle their interest in Keane before bringing in Harry Maguire.

It is debatable if Keane would have done better than Lindelof at the club. The Swede is a polarising figure who comes in for criticism for his indecisiveness at the back.

Lindelof continues to struggle in the United backline

More Manchester United News

While signing Keane will continue to be a what-if scenario, it has become apparent that United need to upgrade on Lindelof.

The Red Devils, however, will not be doing so this season, with a new centre-back not on the agenda.

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