Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini is confident that Kevin De Bruyne will not miss the rest of the season despite him being stretchered off in Wednesday’s Capital One Cup semi-final win against Everton.
The 24-year-old Belgium international played a massive part in helping the Citizens secure their second League Cup final appearance in three seasons when he stepped off the bench after 65 minutes of the second leg at the Etihad Stadium.
Five minutes later the club-record £55million signing fired in Raheem Sterling’s pull-back from the left to put City 2-1 ahead on the night and levelled up the aggregate score at 3-3.
De Bruyne then crossed for Sergio Aguero to send a glancing header past Toffees’ keeper Joel Robles on 76 minutes which won the tie for the hosts.
However things turned sour for the former Chelsea star in the closing stages when he fell awkwardly before being carried off on a stretcher holding his knee.
There were initial fears that De Bruyne might have suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury which would have ruled him out for the rest of this season and also Belgium’s Euro 2016 campaign.
But ahead of a scan later on Thursday, Pellegrini revealed the injury does not appear to be as bad as first feared and he backed the player to play a part in their Premier League title push.
“I’m optimistic he won’t be out for the rest of the season,” the Chilean said.
“We’ll see how important the damage is. It’s not the cruciate ligament.”
He added: “The doctor thinks, but he cannot be sure, that it’s a problem in his medial ligament.”
City are 1.61 to defeat Liverpool in the Capital One Cup final on February 28, while they are 2.25 to win the Premier League this season.