Manchester City midfielder Kevin de Bruyne is targeting a return to full training by the end March after damaging his knee ligaments last month.
De Bruyne, who joined the Premier League club from VfL Wolfsburg for a club record fee in August, is City’s second-highest scorer behind Sergio Aguero, with 12 goals in all competitions this season.
“I hope to be back training with the squad in five weeks, after the international break at the end of March,” the 24-year-old told the club website (www.mcfc.co.uk).
“Everything’s going according to plan. I’ve already been working cautiously for four weeks now: doing some squats, training my muscles. Now the brace is off, the real work is about to begin.”
The Belgium international is optimistic he can help the club challenge for both the Premier League and Champions League titles and was frustrated to miss out on the League Cup final win over Liverpool on Sunday.
“I hate sitting in the stands,” he said.
“It’s a weird feeling to miss a final, but I’m really happy we’ve won…. We still have two leagues to go for. I really can’t complain.”
City are fourth in the Premier League table, nine points behind leaders Leicester City, and have a 3-1 advantage over Dynamo Kiev going into the second-leg of their last-16 Champions League tie in two weeks.