United set to re-sign Keane for RM137.5m — two years af­ter sell­ing him on the cheap

New Straits Times - - Sport -


MANCH­ESTER United are set to re-sign Michael Keane from Burn­ley in a £25 mil­lion (RM137.5 mil­lion) deal this sum­mer.

It’s un­der­stood that United have emerged as clear favourites to take the 24-year-old Eng­land cen­tre-back back to Old Traf­ford.

Keane has de­vel­oped into one of the Premier League’s most highly-rated de­fend­ers since leav­ing United to join Burn­ley for LON­DON: Ever­ton will look to com­mand a £50 mil­lion (RM275 mil­lion) fee for Ross Barkley with the in­creas­ing like­li­hood he will leave this sum­mer.

Ron­ald Koe­man, Ever­ton’s man­ager, is­sued an ul­ti­ma­tum last week when he stressed that Barkley would have to be sold if he did not sign a new con­tract. He im­posed a dead­line for that to hap­pen be­fore the end of the sea­son.

Dis­cus­sions with the Eng­land in­ter­na­tional have gone on for most of the cam­paign, right through to last week, but there £2 mil­lion in Jan­uary 2015.

United in­cluded a clause in the deal en­ti­tling them to 25 per cent of any sell-on fee, so they will have to pay less for Keane than any of their ri­vals.

Keane, who has con­tin­ued to live in Manch­ester and is a boy­hood United fan, can ex­pect to quadru­ple his £25,000-a-week wages if he re­turns to a club that he first joined at the age of 11.

Louis van Gaal al­lowed him to go to Burn­ley on loan be­fore sanc­tion­ing a per­ma­nent move to Turf Moor.

How­ever, Jose Mour­inho has has been no sign of a res­o­lu­tion and nor is one ex­pected be­fore that dead­line passes.

Barkley has 12 months re­main­ing on his cur­rent terms and if he was to stay but leave on a free trans­fer at the end of that con­tract, Ever­ton would not be en­ti­tled to any com­pen­sa­tion as he would be 24.

It means Ever­ton will have no choice but to lis­ten to of­fers for the academy grad­u­ate, with Tot­ten­ham and Arse­nal both mon­i­tor­ing the sit­u­a­tion.

The fee Ever­ton would at­tempt to gen­er­ate is the one that iden­ti­fied Keane among sev­eral play­ers that should have been re­tained by his pre­de­ces­sor, and has made him one of his top sum­mer tar­gets along­side Romelu Lukaku and An­toine Griez­mann.

The move is bound to raise ques­tions af­ter United paid a world record £89 mil­lion last sum­mer to sign Paul Pogba, four years af­ter sell­ing him to Ju­ven­tus for £800,000.

But it’s un­der­stood there are no qualms among the Old Traf­ford hi­er­ar­chy about re-sign­ing Keane who made his Eng­land de­but against Ger­many in March. Manch­ester City were quoted in June 2014 when they first en­quired about Barkley.

Koe­man has no in­ten­tion of let­ting the sit­u­a­tion turn into a saga and has al­ready been look­ing at goalscor­ing mid­field­ers who could come in.

Gylfi Sig­urds­son, the Iceland in­ter­na­tional, is a pri­or­ity. Koe­man is a huge ad­mirer of the £25 mil­lion-rated Swansea’s play­maker and at­tempted to sign him when he first ar­rived at Good­i­son Park 12 months ago. He will re­turn this sum­mer.

Davy Klaassen, Ajax’s cap­tain,

Keane is said to be des­per­ate for a re­turn to his boy­hood club. The player and his ad­vi­sors are seek­ing as­sur­ances that he will play in ex­cess of 30 games a sea­son, but that is un­likely to be a stick­ing point.

Chris Smalling could be the odd man out at United as Mour­inho cre­ates space in cen­tral de­fence.

Smalling has grown dis­il­lu­sioned at United this sea­son af­ter be­ing sin­gled out in pub­lic on sev­eral oc­ca­sions by his man­ager for not mak­ing more of an ef­fort to play when he was in­jured. Daily Mail is also firmly on Koe­man’s radar, with the player hav­ing in­di­cated he wants to play in the Premier League.

But Ever­ton in­tend to be am­bi­tious when the win­dow opens and the Arse­nal pair of Alex Oxlade-Cham­ber­lain and Theo Wal­cott are op­tions be­ing con­sid­ered.

Oxlade-Cham­ber­lain re­mains un­de­cided about his fu­ture; like Barkley, he has 12 months re­main­ing on his terms with Arse­nal but is also at­tracted to the idea of work­ing with Jur­gen Klopp at Liver­pool. Daily Mail

Ross Barkley will be sold by Ever­ton if he does not sign a new con­tract.

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