Kevin De Bruyne has admitted that he will consider his future if Manchester City’s two-year ban from European competition stands.
Pep Guardiola’s men were hit with the ban for “serious breaches” of Uefa’s financial fair play regulations, but have appealed against the punishment to the court of arbitration for sport.
As a result of the ban being upheld, the future of the club’s top stars, including the likes of De Bruyne, have been up for debate and the Belgian playmaker appears to have stirred the pot with his latest comments.
For his part, the 28-year-old insists that City can be trusted and have done nothing wrong – although that hasn’t stopped the rumour mill suggesting that he could leave if there was no Champions League football at the Etihad until 2022.
“I’m just waiting,” De Bruyne said in an interview with the Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws, as cited by The Guardian. “The club told us they are going to appeal and they are almost 100% sure they are right. That’s why I’m waiting to see what will happen. I trust my team.
“Once the decision is made, I will review everything. Two years would be long, but in the case of one year I might see.”
De Bruyne also insists that without talk of the European ban, there would be no reason to quit City – even if the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona show an interest him, adding: “I play for one of the best teams in the world, play in England – for my competitive view the best competition – and I like that.
“It remains a challenge to be the best and I need that too.”
De Bruyne currently has three years remaining on his current City contract, although Etihad chief Pep Guardiola will be entering the final year of his own deal next season.
But the Belgian stated that his future did not depend on the manager’s, adding: “I think Pep said he will take his year anyway no matter what. Then his contract ends. But I’m not going to let my decision depend on what Pep is doing.
“Of course I have already worked with other trainers and when Pep leaves, I have to continue working with someone else. But I haven’t really paid much attention to that for the time being. There are more important things at the moment.”
Meanwhile, Juventus have rejected a new offer from Manchester City for Leonardo Bonucci and will not allow the player to leave, according to reports.
The 33-year-old has spent his entire career in his native Italy, but has been linked with a Premier League move throughout his career – previously admitting that he has had offers from both Manchester clubs in the past.
Pep Guardiola outlined him as a target after taking over as Man City boss in 2016, only for Bonucci to stay put at Juventus – and with City’s interest revived, it appears history may repeat itself. Read more…