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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 September 2018

Manchester City await test results of Kevin de Bruyne's knee injury

Sight of midfielder arriving on crutches and wearing a leg brace as he attended the premiere of Amazon's All Or Nothing fly-on-the-wall documentary about the club on Wednesday would suggest an extended spell on the sidelines is forthcoming

Manchester City midfielder Kevin de Bruyne, left, could be ruled out of action for up to four months with a knee injury. Reuters
Manchester City midfielder Kevin de Bruyne, left, could be ruled out of action for up to four months with a knee injury. Reuters

Manchester City are anxiously waiting to learn the extent of a serious knee injury suffered by key player Kevin de Bruyne in training on Wednesday.

Reports emanating from the UK have said the Belgium midfielder could face up to four months on the sidelines. Although City are yet to receive the medical diagnosis, the sight of De Bruyne arriving on crutches and wearing a leg brace as he attended the premiere of Amazon's All Or Nothing fly-on-the-wall documentary about the club on Wednesday evening would suggest an extended spell on the sidelines is forthcoming.

A statement from the Premier League champions read: "Kevin de Bruyne is undergoing tests on his right knee after sustaining an injury at training on Wednesday.

"The extent of the problem is not yet known and we will bring you further updates on Kevin's condition in due course."

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The Premier League champions opened their title defence with a 2-0 victory over Arsenal at the weekend, a match in which De Bruyne started on the bench before being introduced as a second-half substitute.

City face Huddersfield Town at home on Sunday, but it is further down the line that Guardiola could feel the absence of key component of last season's title-winning side. If De Bruyne is told his injury will take, in what would appear the best case scenario, a two-month time frame to recover he would miss City's opening Uefa Champions League fixtures and a potentially crucial clash against Liverpool on October 7.

De Bruyne, who contributed eight goals and 16 assists as City marched to the title by reaching 100 points, only returned to full training last week after a delayed summer break following the World Cup.

The injury could be similar to one De Bruyne suffered during a game against Everton in 2016, when he was ruled out for nine weeks.

Speaking at the premiere in Manchester city centre, teammate Kyle Walker said: "Kevin is a great player and it's just unfortunate that it's happened to him in training but there's more than enough depth in the squad.

"We don't just rely on one player. It's a team game and whoever steps in will do well. Obviously it's a big loss but we've got more than enough cover."

City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan said of De Bruyne: "He played an incredible season.

"He had so much impact on our game. He was maybe the main man for us last season.

"He is very important. We all hope that it is not too serious so he can get back on the training field as soon as possible."

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