City reached the Champions League final for the first time in the club’s history earlier this year, however fell at the final hurdle - leaving their long wait to finally lift the elusive trophy in tact.
Manchester City were ultimately unable to best Thomas Tuchel’s formidable Chelsea side, and a single Kai Havertz goal late in the first-half was enough to see the London club lift the trophy for the second time in their history.
Speaking with Belgian media this week while away on international duty, Kevin De Bruyne has commented on the challenge from Antonio Rudiger that forced the 30-year-old to leave the field with 30 minutes still to play.
As relayed and translated by Football journalist Kristof Terruer, Kevin De Bruyne discussed the nasty collision between himself and Antonio Rudiger that left the Belgian with fractures to his nose and orbital bone – an injury that rendered him unable to continue and put his Euro 2020 hopes in doubt.
Speaking with Belgian media outlet HLN Sport, De Bruyne stated that he does not remember much from the ill-fated evening in Porto.
“I have seen the images back. He (Antonio Rudiger) just wanted to block me, not to cause an injury. For me, it was not a red card. I was concussed, so the (Champions League) final is all a blur.”
In the eyes of many Manchester City supporters, De Bruyne leaving the field effectively ended their hopes of emerging victorious. However, having finally reached the final hurdle, fans are more optimistic about one day winning the Champions League.
Following the incident and the disappointing loss in Porto, Kevin De Bruyne was consoled by club chairman Khaldoon Al-Mubarak, and the interaction was discussed by Al-Mubarak in the club’s self-produced documentary titled ‘Together’.
During one particular scene, the City chairman stated, “I wanted to make sure he remembers this is how it feels losing a final and with his leadership - he's such an important player - we’ll be back and that he will win a Champions League for us."
Having failed to lift the Champions League in Porto, Kevin De Bruyne will now hope to go one better in this year’s edition of the competition.
However, Pep Guardiola’s side will have to beat fierce competition from a plethora of high-quality teams such as Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, and Liverpool.
Although, given the sheer quality within Manchester City’s squad, winning the tournament in May is certainly a possibility.
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