New signing Keane insists leaving Man United is a step forward

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Michael Keane feels moving to Burnley from Manchester United is step forward for his career.

Keane, 22 on Sunday, made turned his loan move into a permanent three and a half year deal on Thursday, before helping the Clarets escape the bottom three with a 2-1 win at home to QPR on Saturday.

Burnley's Michael Keane is tackled by Manchester City's Samir Nasri, left, whilst under pressure from Manchester City's James Milner''Photographer Chris Vaughan/CameraSport''Football - Barclays Premiership - Manchester City v Burnley - Sunday 28th December 2014 - Etihad Stadium - Manchester''� CameraSport - 43 Linden Ave. Countesthorpe. Leicester. England. LE8 5PG - Tel: +44 (0) 116 277 4147 - admin@camerasport.com - www.camerasport.com

Burnley's Michael Keane is tackled by Manchester City's Samir Nasri, left, whilst under pressure from Manchester City's James Milner''Photographer Chris Vaughan/CameraSport''Football - Barclays Premiership - Manchester City v Burnley - Sunday 28th December 2014 - Etihad Stadium - Manchester''� CameraSport - 43 Linden Ave. Countesthorpe. Leicester. England. LE8 5PG - Tel: +44 (0) 116 277 4147 - admin@camerasport.com - www.camerasport.com

Pundits warn the only way is down after leaving Old Trafford, but the England Under 21 international doesn’t necessarily see it like that: “It’s not a step back because I’m playing Premier League football here, and if I was there, I wouldn’t be, so it’s actually a step forward if you look at it like that.

“Leaving Manchester United, you might say it’s a step back, but it’s just one of those things you have to do.

“It was a big decision.

“I spoke to my family about it for ages because I’d been there nearly 12 years.

“But I felt it was the right time, seeing as I am playing regularly and I wouldn’t get that at United at the minute.”

Keane had been involved with the first team squad at United before his loan switch on deadline day, and he wasn’t surplus to requirements, although he was warned he was down the pecking order: “United didn’t force me out, it was sort of both parties really.

“They said if everyone was fit, I wouldn’t start games.

“I thought I’m playing games here, so at my age I’ve got a chance to play regularly in the Premier League.

“That’s all I’ve ever wanted.

“It was quite an easy decision in the end.

“It’s a good step for me and hopefully I can keep progressing.”

And he sees no reason why Burnley can’t retain their Premier League status: “We’ve got a huge month ahead, we know we’ve got three or four huge games in a row where we’re playing against teams around us.

“Moving out of the relegation zone on Saturday was huge for us, it just gives us that belief that we can do it.

“We have to win our games at home, especially against teams around us.”