Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on Tuesday confirmed that his star midfielder Kevin De Bruyne will be out for a few months after he suffered an injury on the opening weekend of the Premier League.
“We have to decide [on] his surgery. It will be a few months out. We will decide in the new [few] days. Three or four months out,” said Guardiola ahead of City’s Super Cup final against Sevilla.
The Belgian midfielder was a doubtful starter for City going into the new season, following an injury he suffered during the UEFA Champions League final last season.
After playing more than an hour in the Community Shield against Arsenal, De Bruyne was named in the starting lineup by Guardiola against Burnley for City’s opening game of the Premier League season,
But the 32-year-old midfielder was taken off after just 23 minutes, with what seemed like a hamstring injury. His injury though didn’t hinder City as it overcame the Clarets 3-0 to kick start its Premier League title defence.
Guardiola also took a shot at the packed football schedule, which is increasing the frequency of major player injuries.
“In my first pre-season with Barcelona we had 25 days of preparation before the first game, which was a Champions League qualifier. This season we had four or five before the first game,” said Guardiola.
“Look at all the cruciate ligament injuries there have been in all the big leagues this start of the season. The players don’t rest either physically or mentally.
“They make them travel to Asia or America for the club’s purposes and play really hard games on bad pitches and the players get injured, or will get injured, because they don’t have these 25 days to prepare,” he added.
De Bruyne’s injury means City increase the urgency of its search for a midfielder in the transfer market, with West Ham’s Lucas Paqueta reported to be its primary target.
But Guardiola didn’t let out any of his transfer plans. “Kevin has specific qualities. To lose it for a long time is really tough for us. At the same time we have to look forward. The skills for Kevin is irreplaceable but we have players with different talent.”
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