De Bruyne slams Nations League; says he is ‘not looking forward to’ playing ‘glorified friendlies’

Date published: Monday 30th May 2022 11:44 - Jason Soutar

Kevin De Bruyne during a match

Man City and Belgium playmaker Kevin De Bruyne has admitted he is “not looking forward to playing” in the ‘unimportant’ UEFA Nations League next month.

De Bruyne is currently on international duty as his country prepare to play four Nations League fixtures between June 3 and June 14.

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These fixtures come following a long season for the 30-year-old at club level. He was named Premier League player of the year after helping City retain the title.

De Bruyne overcame injuries and Covid-19 during the campaign and deserves a rest, but will have to wait until his break with Belgium comes to an end.

Ahead of the Red Devils’ Nations League fixtures, the former Wolfsburg midfielder slammed the competition, saying that the matches are “glorified friendlies”.

“For me, the Nations League is not important,” he said (via Manchester Evening News). “We have to play these games, but it feels like a campaign of friendly games. Just glorified friendlies after a long and tough season. I’m not looking forward to it.

“In 12 months we have three weeks of holiday. The people from the outside do not understand how a player feels after a season. But they don’t have to because it won’t change anything. It doesn’t even matter to mention it, nothing will change anyway.”

De Bruyne scored 19 goals and provided 14 assists across all competitions in 2021/22 as his side won the league and reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup and Champions League.

Elsewhere, Rodri has acknowledged that Manchester City will have to “change” how they play next season in order to get the best out of Erling Haaland.

The Norwegian striker signed from Borussia Dortmund after the Citizens activated the £51m release clause in his contract.

“The Viking is joining,” Rodri joked during an interview with Diario AS. “He is a player who’ll change the way we play. We use a false nine, which gives you some things but also takes away others. It was clear to me that Haaland would fit in.

“We had a space in the squad that he is going to fill. He is an amazing physical specimen.”

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