Kevin de Bruyne could be out for four months as Manchester City conclude whether he really needs medical surgery on a hamstring injury, Pep Guardiola says.
The 32-year-old limped off after 23 minutes in City’s initial win against Burnley at Turf Moor on Friday.
De Bruyne likewise went off injured during the Champions League win over Inter Milan in June.
“It’s a significant physical issue,” said Guardiola.
The Belgium International missed all of City’s pre-season games and returned as a substitute during the Community Shield defeat to Arsenal.
“We need to choose if he really wants surgery or not but he will be out for a couple of months,” added Guardiola, who affirmed De Bruyne’s issue is connected with the same hamstring.
“The choice of medical procedure will be required before long and could see him miss three or four months”.
De Bruyne scored 10 goals and gave 31 assists as City wins the Champions League, Premier League, and FA Cup last season.
He said recently he had been playing through the pain with a hamstring injury for the last two months of the time, however, Guardiola said every precaution had been taken before the game against Burnley.
“We could say don’t play yet this injury could happen later,” the Spanish supervisor said. “Before I took the choice I addressed the specialist, the physio, and him. He said he felt better.”
Concerning whether City will attempt to acquire fortifications before the transfer window closes, Guardiola said: “We will see. After what happened we will see the potential outcomes.”
City face Europa Association victors Sevilla in the Super Cup in Athens, Greece on Wednesday at 20:00 BST.