Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Cristiano Ronaldo link-up on as Al Nassr line up explosive move for 101-goal Man City superstar

Cristiano Ronaldo could soon have a new marquee teammate in the form of a Man City superstar at Al Nassr

Cristiano Ronaldo could soon have a new marquee teammate at Al Nassr

Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne is reportedly attracting interest from Saudi Pro League side Al Nassr again – but other teams are expected to join the race for the midfielder.

De Bruyne joined Man City from Wolfsburg in 2015 for a then-club record fee of £54m, in a move that raised a few eyebrows due to the hefty price tag.

All his critics have been made to eat their words as the Belgium international has gone on to become one of the best players in the Premier League’s history, helping City win five Premier League titles, multiple FA Cups and League Cups, and last season they won the Champions League for the first time in a treble-winning campaign.

However, time waits for no man, with troublesome hamstring injuries repeatedly sidelining the 32-year-old in recent seasons.

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While his talent and impact on games is undeniable, the rise of teammate Phil Foden may cushion the blow if De Bruyne were to leave Pep Guardiola’s side this summer, with the England international scoring 22 goals and bagging 10 assists in all competitions this term.

Saudi side keen on De Bruyne again

So, will City try to cash in on the former Chelsea youngster? Last summer, The Athletic reported that De Bruyne was offered £60m a year to move to Saudi Arabia but the Belgian turned down this proposal.

The experienced midfielder is out of contract in the summer of 2025 and it is understood he has thought about finishing his career at the Etihad in is mid-30s.

Now, journalist Rudy Galetti claims Al Nassr remain interested in De Bruyne, that the Manchester City star will be approached by the Saudi side’s representatives, but other suitors could come in for him at the end of the campaign.

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If the former Werder Bremen loanee does move to the Saudi Pro League side, that would see him link up with Cristiano Ronaldo – whose contract runs until the summer of 2025.

Funds are not an issue in Saudi Arabia so a big fee and transfer package could potentially tempt De Bruyne over there but it appears he wants to stay put at City, so long as he still is a key part of Guardiola’s plans.

De Bruyne makes Man City claim

To that point, he said at the weekend: “The bar was so high after last year and we were playing on three fronts until Wednesday – now it’s two – but to do this year-after-year is a sign of character and the team has that in abundance. I’m proud and it’s an honour to play with this team because they show up every day.”

On his injury-hit campaign, where he has been limited to 19 appearances, he added: “It’s been a different year. It’s been a weird period – coming back after such a long injury.

“I know people expect to see you on the pitch and to be the same as before, but it takes time to get to your best level. Some performances have been really good, some have been a bit less, but I give everything that I need to get to this level so I’m happy.”

That does not sound like a player itching for a transfer exit. A big decision may lie ahead for De Bruyne – who has scored 101 goals and bagged 166 appearances in 375 games for City,  this summer, but if he does go, he will go down as one of English football’s all-time greats.

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