It is being reported that Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne will miss the next five to six weeks of play on account of a knee injury. Consequently, the player will not be able to participate in the much anticipated match against Manchester United scheduled for 11th November.

The 27 year old Belgian national has had a problematic season due to his injury troubles, having already missed two months of the premier league after damaging ligaments during training in August. His absence from the club comes at a crucial time, when the Reds are in hot pursuit of City with over six months remaining for them to reach the top spot in the Premier League.

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‘Just another game’ – Pep Guardiola

According to coach Pep Guardiola there is unnecessary focus on Kevin De Bruyne’s absence from the Manchester Derby. As per him, the game against Manchester United is just another match in the premier league, like a game against Southampton or any other club in the league. “The Manchester Derby is not a final – it will be just another game”, said Guardiola.

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Even so, the 41 year old Spanish coach did express sadness for De Bruyne’s absence from the league, who has already missed out on over two and a half months of premier league football. Despite the injury, Guardiola is confident that De Bruyne will come out of his spell of bad luck with the rhythm and poise that is essential for premier league football, especially since his injury is a relatively minor one which does not require surgery.

Betting odds unaffected by absence

While it is a well acknowledged fact that Manchester City is able to perform like a well-oiled machine with Kevin De Bruyne in the midfield, his absence has not had a tremendous impact on betting interest around the club. The increased betting action around City can also be attributed to interesting Premier League betting offers from top UK Bookmakers, where City winning the premier league is available at 8/1, while for Gabriel Jesus to finish top scorer is available at 12/1. The club’s performance in the league is also dependent upon Sunday night’s clash with Southampton, for which Manchester City can be backed to win to nil at 17/20.

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An unlucky injury

De Bruyne injured his left knee in the 2-0 win over Fulham in the Carabao Cup on Thursday, hobbling from the pitch in the 85th minute after defender Timothy Fosu-Mensah had landed heavily on his leg. He is set to miss Sunday’s clash with Southampton, Wednesday’s Champions League game with Shakhtar Donetsk and the derby with United, and is also a doubtful player for the trip to Stamford Bridge on 8th December.

“It was an unlucky injury”, said Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero, who went on to comment on De Bruyne’s terrific recovery after his first injury. Fortunately, City have an excellent medical department which is adequately equipped to deal with De Bruyne’s situation, according to Aguero. The midfielder’s absence from the Premier League gives him a chance to spend time with his second child, who was born on Wednesday, and coach Guardiola hopes that his extended period on the sidelines will ensure that he is even stronger for the second half of the season.