Kevin De Bruyne may have to consider his Manchester City future should the club’s two-season ban from the Champions League be upheld, though he has no immediate desire to leave the club.
De Bruyne has been in sensational form for City this season, though football seasons across Europe have either been placed on hold or cancelled due to the coronavirus crisis.
Prior to the suspension of matches, De Bruyne played a starring role as City took a 2-1 lead over Real Madrid in the away first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.
It remains to be seen whether City will be able to compete in UEFA’s flagship club competition over the next two campaigns, with the club having been banned due to breaches of Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations.
Pressed on whether the ban could impact his future at City, De Bruyne suggested a two-year suspension could lead to him considering his options, though he has faith in the club winning their appeal against the sanction.
“I’m just waiting,” said De Bruyne in a video interview with HLN Live. “The club has told us that they are going to appeal and that they are almost one hundred percent sure that they are right.
“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 [without European football] would be long, in the case of one year I might see.
“But I’m very happy with City. 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. What is coming is coming.”
Pep Guardiola’s future at City is also in doubt, with the former Barcelona boss’ contract set to expire in 2021.
De Bruyne, though, refuted the suggestion a decision on his next move will depend on whether or not Guardiola remains at City.
“Not particularly. I think Pep says he will take his year of contract anyway, then his contract ends,” De Bruyne said.
“But I’m not going to let my decision depend on what Pep is doing. Of course I have already worked with other coaches 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.”
Reports emerged on Saturday claiming Roberto Martinez had extended his contract as coach of the Belgian national team, a move welcomed by De Bruyne.
“The choice was his. Maybe he would have done something different if the European Championship was played this summer. But we have a project, which is far from complete. Stopping now would be weird. It seems logical to me that he renews his contract,” De Bruyne said.
“Everyone is happy to stay longer. Why is he a good coach? Well, Martinez has a lot of experience.
“Tactically, he has learned a lot in England. He let us play in a fixed system, and that works. The team has grown in recent years.”
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