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Saturday, June 22, 2024

De Bruyne ‘open’ to Saudi transfer as Man City identify replacement

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Kevin De Bruyne says that he is “open” to leaving Manchester City in the summer transfer window due to the “incredible money” that he could earn in Saudi Arabia.

The Belgian midfielder’s contract with the Premier League club expires in June 2025 and there has been no agreement over an extension, leading to speculation about his future.

The 32-year-old has been linked with a move to the Saudi Pro League, which snapped up a number of star names from English top-flight clubs last summer.

De Bruyne admitted in an interview this week that his head has been turned by the potential money he could rake in from such a move and that nothing is off the table.

“I still have one year left on my contract, so I have to think about what could happen,” he told Het Laatste Nieuws.

“My eldest is now eight years old and knows nothing but England. He also asks how long I will play for City. Once the moment comes, we will have to deal with it in a certain way.

“At my age you have to be open to everything. You’re talking about incredible amounts of money in what may be the end of my career. Sometimes you have to think about that.

“If I play there for two years, I will be able to earn an incredible amount of money. Before that I had to play football for 15 years. I may not even reach that amount yet.

“Then you have to think about what that could mean next. But at the moment I haven’t had to think about that yet.”

Football reporter Ben Jacobs claims that Man City would expect a transfer fee in the region of £100 million, but would prefer him to stay.

If Man City do choose to sell arguably their best ever player, then they could fill the De Bruyne-shaped hole in their squad with Newcastle United star Bruno Guimaraes.

The Magpies are desperate to hold onto the Brazilian, but there is a £100m release in his clause that Man City could activate to prise him away.

The Premier League champions have long held an interest in West Ham United attacking midfielder Lucas Paqueta, but the FA’s charge over betting allegations have effectively ruled out a move for the 26-year-old.

Read – Premier League clubs on alerts as Bayern defender up for sale

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