Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne said he is still feeling the effects of COVID-19 nearly a month after he first tested positive for the virus.
De Bruyne returned to test positive on 17 November, the day after Belgium’s World Cup qualifying match against Wales. He returned to training after 10 days in isolation and managed to complete 90 minutes for City against Leeds United at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday.
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De Bruyne scored twice in the 7-0 win, including a 25-yard rocket in the second half, but then the 30-year-old said he had not yet recovered.
“I still sometimes feel like my body is still acclimating because sometimes I do two or three races and I feel like it, after I had COVID,” he said.
“I’ve been pretty sick for four days. I think it was like the flu but I’ve never had it so I can’t say for sure.
“But I had a high fever, especially in the evening, and I lost my smell and taste. After five days the condition improved but I needed more time to taste and smell but now I’m fine.”
De Bruyne has had a tough six months after having to leave early during Chelsea’s Champions League final defeat in May after colliding with Antonio Rudiger and then damaging his ankle ligaments while playing for Belgium at Euro 2020.
He has been limited to just 12 appearances this season but there is hope that his problems with injury and illness are now behind him.
“Obviously this season is what it is,” he said. “There is nothing I can do about it, I got kicked in the face, kicked in the ankle and contracted COVID afterwards.
“It’s part of football. After COVID, I came back and trained as hard as I could. With the schedule it wasn’t that easy, but I’m doing well, I’ve played in two games and been in two sub-matches so I’m doing what I need to do.
“The ankle was the worst because playing and being in pain every day is not something you want but after a while it got better. Then I got COVID.
“I was 10 days old on my own so I was running against walls. I can’t sit still anyway. I ran away from my family because I didn’t think we had it as a family and I didn’t want to give it to my wife and kids. It was very hard to see them through a glass door.”