Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has backed Burnley defender Michael Keane to do a Paul Pogba and return to Old Trafford as a star in the future. The 24-year-old came up through the ranks of the Red Devils' youth system, but failed to become a regular with their first team.

Keane spent the majority of his time away on loan and after the arrival of Louis van Gaal, the Dutchman allowed him to join Burnley on a temporary basis. However, his move to Turf Moor was made permanent in January 2015 as he signed a three-and-half-year deal with Sean Dyche's side.

The former United man has been a regular in his side's defence and has established himself as one of the key players in Burnley's back four. Pogba, who left the Red Devils as a free agent, returned to Old Trafford after spending four years at Juventus. He was re-signed by United for a world-record fee of £89.3m ($110m) after he developed into one of the best midfielders in the world.

Ferdinand hailed Keane for his rise at Burnley and claims the defender can emulate Pogba in making a return to United in the future.

"He likes to ask questions, he likes constructive criticism and that's a great attribute to have, to be there, to look at your game in detail and try and improve," Ferdinand told BBC Radio 5 Live, as quoted by

"He's always wanting to improve, whether it's nutrition, whether it's physical, whether it's actual working on your game after training. He was always wanting to learn and understand more.

"I think the moment he found out he was going to leave Manchester United — every kid's dream in that area is to play for Manchester United — so to leave the club was a huge wrench for him.

"But it allowed him to go and spread his wings and bloom really and become the player he is now. At Manchester United he wasn't afforded that opportunity, for whatever reason.

"You look at the likes of Pogba; he's gone away and come back now and become a huge star. Michael Keane, he could do that himself."

Michael Keane
Burnley's Michael Keane has established himself as one of the best centre-backs in the Premier League Getty