Kevin de Bruyne undergoes minor surgery on eye socket ahead of Belgium's Euro 2020 opener


Kevin De Bruyne of Manchester City celebrates after he scores his sides second goal during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Sheffield United at Etihad Stadium on December 29, 2019 in Manchester, United Kingdom.

Belgium manager Roberto Martinez revealed that Kevin de Bruyne has undergone minor surgery on his eye socket.

The Manchester City midfielder suffered the injury after clashing with Antonio Rudiger during his team's Champions League final defeat to Chelsea.

De Bruyne fractured his nose and a bone around his left eye socket following the incident sparking fears he would miss some, if not all, of this summer's tournament.

But his national team coach says the 29-year-old's surgery "could even speed up his return because he won't need a mask".

Martinez added that De Bruyne would be unavailable for their first Euro 2020 match against Russia on June 12 and refused to predict when the playmaker would be able to play again.

“ It went very well, very positively. We are looking forward to Monday when he will join our squad," said Martinez, whose team also take on Denmark (June 17) and Finland (June 21) in their pool.

"That small intervention was necessary with a view to the long term. He will not need a long recovery.

"The operation only took 20 minutes. The medical staff is satisfied with the result. De Bruyne is now doing well, that's all."

Belgium, ranked No1 in the world, face Croatia in their final warm-up match having drawn 1-1 with Greece in their previous game.

"We have to show that we have taken a step forward in the preparation," Martinez said. "We are facing a strong team, with a lot of experience and technical qualities in midfield.

"We are going to have to be sharp and concentrated. It is a test for the group stage of the European Championship, and this is a match we need."

Axel Witsel, who has been included in the squad even though he is still recovering from a ruptured Achilles tendon in January, will also miss the game against Croatia in Brussels.

A third midfielder recovering from injury, Real Madrid's Eden Hazard, will start on the bench, although Martinez admitted that he still had some problems with a thigh injury.

"Eden can do almost everything in training," said Martinez. "I feel he is fit for tomorrow. He won't start the game, but I think he will finish it."

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