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Keane keen to earn cup stripes

Michael Keane hopes to take another step in his progression at Manchester United in Wednesday’s Capital One Cup clash with Chelsea.

The young defender has put his hand up for selection at Stamford Bridge after playing in the 2-1 win over Newcastle United in the previous round.

Keane, 19, admitted while the game against Alan Pardew’s side left him physically and mentally tired, he is aware that only further exposure will help him cope.

“You play games with more pressure when you get to a higher level,” he told MUTV.

“Every game you play, you’ve got more experience of playing for points and playing because it means something rather than just friendlies.

“When you get called into the first team, you’re used to being desperate to win.

“I’ve never been that tired after a game. Mentally as well as physically because of the concentration, how the day went building up to it and then the 90 minutes was tough but we did well.”

United have suffered a number of injuries in defence, providing several opportunities for the England youth international to feature in the senior team.

“I’ve been training every day,” Keane said. “Working hard and getting fitter every day so it’s going well.

“I know there’s probably only going to be one or two opportunities because of the players involved but I can’t think like that.

“I’ve just got to work hard every day in training and prove I’m good enough to play and, hopefully, get picked.

“A lot has happened in the last year but it’s been good experience for me.

“I keep stepping up a level and, hopefully, that will keep happening and I can progress with England and keep getting my chances here in the first team.”

Tue 30 October, 2012
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