The Kevin de Bruyne saga continues.
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With reports suggesting that Manchester City were set to seal a $83 million move for De Bruyne in the coming hours, Wolfsburg officials have extinguished those hopes as the Belgian winger looks set to remain with the Bundesliga club for a little while longer.
A move from City for De Bruyne would see them break the transfer record to sign a player from Germany’s top flight, but Wolfsburg’s sporting director Klaus Allofs had the following to say on Thursday about any potential move.
“When I hear the news about Kevin de Bruyne leaving for huge amounts of money for Manchester City, I can already tell you that is not true,” Allofs said. “Over the last year there has been lots of talks to try and get him to stay at the club and there have been negotiations with Manchester City about possibly transferring but again I can inform you that it is not true. At this point in time he is not going to Manchester City.”
Have City got cold feet? Are Wolfsburg proving too difficult to deal with in the transfer market? And do the Citizens really need De Bruyne?
All of those questions may point towards why this deal is dragging out, as the man who had the most assists (20) in the top five leagues in Europe last season is obviously a huge talent but City still have Raheem Sterling, Jesus Navas and Samir Nasri around in the wide positions.
Is De Bruyne really worth splashing over $80 million on after he struggled to adapt to the Premier League and was sold by Chelsea in January 2014 after being surplus to requirements? Despite his sublime passing, crossing and finishing ability, there are question marks surrounding his strength and work rate, so maybe he isn’t quite ready for the PL yet.
Regardless, with five days left in the summer transfer window, there is still time for City to salvage this deal. If they want to. And Wolfsburg saying “at this point” certainly leaves the door wide-open for De Bruyne to leave.