De Bruyne is playing through a 'private' personal issue, reveals Henry

Kevin De Bruyne is playing on through a ‘private’ personal issue as he leads Man City’s chase of the Treble, reveals Thierry Henry, after he told boss Pep Guardiola to ‘shut up’ before emotional embraces on the touchline

  • Man City stormed into the Champions League final by crushing Real Madrid 
  • Kevin De Bruyne was crucial to City across the two legs of the semi-final tie 
  • De Bruyne had an embrace with Thierry Henry following a private conversation 

Thierry Henry has revealed Kevin De Bruyne is playing through a ‘private’ personal issue after the pair shared an emotional embrace following Manchester City’s Champions League semi-final win over Real Madrid.

City secured a 5-1 win on aggregate over the reigning European champions with De Bruyne playing a key role.

De Bruyne has three children with wife Michele Lacroix, who watched Wednesday night’s game from the stands at the Etihad Stadium. 

The Belgian star scored City’s equaliser in the 1-1 draw in last week’s first leg, before providing the assist for Bernardo Silva’s crucial opening goal.

The goal provided the platform for City’s 4-0 win on the night, as Pep Guardiola’s side set up a final against Inter Milan.

Kevin De Bruyne and Thierry Henry embraced after Man City’s victory against Real Madrid

De Bruyne was crucial in both legs of the Champions League semi-final to help City advance

The Man City star, pictured with his wife Michele Lacroix, has been key to their Treble pursuit

De Bruyne, who was substituted in the 84th minute, was spotted embracing former Belgian assistant coach Thierry Henry after a post-match conversation. 

Henry, who was working as a pundit for CBS, said he had ‘even more respect’ for the midfielder for playing in the tie following their ‘private’ conversation. 

‘It was [a touching moment]. I can’t say it because I have to keep that private,’ Henry said.

‘But from what he said to me, I even more respect how he played tonight and how he came and battled with his team. I can’t share what he said because I can’t share it. That’s how it is. 

‘But once again I will go back to, for me he is the most important player.’

Mail Sport understands City wish to keep the matter private and are confident it will not affect the rest of the season.

The exchange between De Bruyne and Henry came after the midfielder had told City boss Guardiola to ‘shut up’.

De Bruyne and Guardiola had been seen rowing in the second half, after he had been robbed of possession. 

Guardiola was left seething when the Belgian drove forward with the ball just inside Madrid’s half and, after failing to spot a potential pass to Jack Grealish on the left-hand side, was robbed of possession by Militao.

De Bruyne’s wife Michele Lacroix, centre, celebrated City’s semi-final victory from the stands

De Bruyne reportedly told Pep Guardiola to ‘shut up’ during a disagreement in the second half

The pair put their brief dispute behind them as they enjoyed a celebratory hug on the touchline

The City boss walked back to the bench while staring down at the floor after the row.

Victory over Real Madrid saw City move a step closer to a potential Treble, with Guardiola’s side poised to retain the Premier League title ahead of both the Champions League and FA Cup finals.

De Bruyne had been cheered on from the stands by his wife Michele, who he married back in 2017.

The couple have been together since 2014 and are parents to sons Mason, seven, Rome, four, and Suri, two. 

De Bruyne had worked under Henry during the Frenchman’s two spells as Belgium’s assistant manager.

Henry worked as the assistant to former Belgium boss Roberto Martinez between 2016-18 and from 2021-22.

The 45-year-old left the role with Martinez after Belgium’s group stage exit at the World Cup in Qatar.

Henry had hailed De Bruyne following the semi-final first leg last week, saying the 31-year-old’s brain is the ‘best’ he had seen. 

Henry worked together with De Bruyne during his two spells as Belgium’s assistant coach

‘I think Kevin, his brain is the best that I’ve seen’ Henry said. ‘Because his brain, in some places I don’t know what he thinks about sometimes in all fairness. You look at him and it is like he is not with us, it can almost be a problem because you are not on his level.

‘I think he is the most clever player I’ve ever seen in my life. It is just second to none, the way that he thinks. I saw him for six years on and off with Belgium, you love the man a bit more because I saw stuff that he did in training and in games.

‘He is a perfectionist, unbelievable. Kevin, his brain, I am still thinking about stuff that I’ve seen and it is just from a different planet.’

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