He had performed wonders in the Bundesliga with Werder Bremen, starring in a struggling side who barely avoided relegation.
Chelsea fought hard to keep hold of him this summer among interest from Germany, and he started against Hull City on the opening day of the campaign.
So he seemed to be on the radar for Jose Mourinho this season, but he has now dropped out of the squad as Mourinho admitted he has not been impressed with him.
But this is a World Cup season, and De Bruyne happens to play for one of the most competitive national teams in the world right now … Belgium.
So he needs to play week-in-week-out in order to cement a place in the squad - which doesn’t look likely at Stamford Bridge.
And with Belgium confirming their place in Brazil with a 2-1 win in Croatia on Friday night - De Bruyne must be starting to wonder about his future.
Yesterday he was linked with Juventus - but late last night it was the reports linking him with VfL Wolfsburg that again caught the eye.
Wolfsburg recently admitted their interest in the player, with chief executive Mike Schussler admitting they are monitoring the player:
And it appears to be good news for Wolfsburg - as according to De Bruyne’s agent, they will be the first to know if he wants to force a move from Chelsea.
Patrick de Koster has told German media:
"If Kevin has to find a club in January, we speak with Mike Schüssler (Wolfsburg chief)."
But a deal is not necessarily on the cards, as his agent continued:
"The fact that Kevin is now training with the U21s, I do not feel as punishment. This is the case in England just once, because Kevin is not the only player. "
But if his World Cup place with Belgium begins to come under threat - he will surely be on his way to the Volkswagen Arena.
image: © Erik Daniel Drost