Kevin De Bruyne has spent six highly productive seasons at Manchester City, and the playmaking extraordinaire plans to spend at least four more at the Etihad Stadium after signing a new contract through the summer of 2025.
Manchester City announced the new deal on Wednesday, with the 29-year-old Belgian proclaiming he “could not be happier.”
— Kevin De Bruyne (@DeBruyneKev) April 7, 2021
Having ascended to vice-captain status behind only Fernandinho, De Bruyne is likely to take over the captain’s armband this summer when the 35-year-old Brazilian’s contract expires. To say legend status is in De Bruyne’s future, and already well within reach, would be an understatement for inarguably one of the most gifted players the Premier League has ever seen.
“Since joining City in 2015, I have felt at home. I love the fans — my family are settled here in Manchester and my own game has developed really well.
“This football club is geared for success. It offers me everything I need to maximize my performance, so signing this contract was a straightforward decision. I am playing the best football of my career and I honestly feel there is more to come.
“Pep and I see football in the same way. Having that relationship with a manager is so important to me because our objectives are totally aligned, and we want the same things. My focus now is on ensuring we have a successful end to the current campaign. Our results and performances so far have been excellent, but we need to make sure we end the season with the silverware we deserve.”
Perhaps De Bruyne’s decision was made with certain assurances that Pep Guardiola will remain Manchester City manager for some, if not most or all, of the term of the new contract. Guadiola’s “free-eight” role, which he seemingly created specifically to maximize De Bruyne’s chance-creation output through freedom to go virtually anywhere on the field while in possession of the ball, while also carrying out the defensive duties of a more traditional central midfielder the other 10 20 30 percent of the game when Manchester City don’t have the ball.