Manchester City’s hopes of retaining Kevin De Bruyne have suffered a huge blow, as the Belgian hints at a possible exit if the Champions League ban is upheld
UEFA fined Manchester City with a two-year suspension from European competitions for breaching FFP regulations, but the reigning Premier League holders have already filed an appeal against the ban.
While waiting to see the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s decision, the Citizens deal with the prospect of losing some of their key players if the original verdict is upheld.
One of City’s vital first-team members, Kevin De Bruyne, could leave the club to fulfill his dream of winning the Champions League, with Barcelona and Real Madrid both keen to take him away from the Etihad.
The Belgian dynamo has recently admitted that he is desperate to land the most coveted club trophy in Europe, and the possibility of staying out of the competition for two years could force him to leave Pep Guardiola’s side.
“Obviously, it’s something [Champions League] I have not won, so maybe subconsciously, it’s something that we want more,” De Bruyne said.
Kevin De Bruyne:— Man City Xtra (@City_Xtra) May 2, 2020
"I'm very happy with City. I play for one of the best teams in the world, play in England – the best competition – and I like that. It remains a challenge to be the best and I need that too. What is coming is coming…"#MCFC | @ManCity pic.twitter.com/WnA0JGQ70j
The 28-year-old’s contract runs out in summer 2023, but he keeps his options open, as City’s European future continues to hang in the balance.
“I’m just waiting. The club has told us that they are going to appeal – and that they are almost 100 percent sure that they are right,” he said, as transmitted by the Daily Mirror.
“That’s why I’m waiting to see what will happen. I trust my team.
“Once the statement is made, I will review everything.
“Two years would be long. In the case of one year, I might see.”
The former Chelsea misfit had played a pivotal role for City before the coronavirus pandemic postponed all football activities indefinitely, netting eight goals and providing 17 assists in 26 Premier League outings.
De Bruyne had been equally impressive in the Champions League, orchestrating City’s turnaround against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu.
The English giants were 1-0 down 15 minutes before the final whistle. Then, the Belgia international stepped up, feeding Gabriel Jesus with a delightful assist before converting a spot-kick to complete the comeback.