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  1. I need to be playing in Europe
  2. I need to play in Europe

Which sentence is more correct or is there any difference at all?

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  • What do you think? Then we can help you better.
    – mdewey
    Jun 10, 2021 at 12:12

2 Answers 2

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The verb - need - takes a non-finite infinitive clause as its complement. By itself a non finite clause is un-tensed, therefore they can't locate a situation in time. The time they express is dictated by the verb in matrix clause. However they can express aspectuality.

Some example sentences and their meaning:


N̲E̲E̲D̲ t̲o̲ b̲e̲ V̲E̲R̲B̲-̲i̲n̲g;


FUTURE

We really need to be doing more for our moms.

We need to be doing this in the next 30 days.

What meaning expressed through non-finite clause should happen in the future.

ONGOING AT THE TIME EXPRESSED BY THE VERB OF MATRIX CLAUSE

We're doing what we need to be doing.

Right now, the test is forcing us to spend too much time on stuff that we don't really need to be spending time on any more.

HABITUAL

Probably not, and we probably don't need to be spending $1.5 billion every year paying for government-subsidized cell phones.


N̲E̲E̲D̲ ̲t̲o̲ ̲V̲E̲R̲B̲-̲pl̲a̲i̲n̲-̲f̲o̲r̲m̲


FUTURE

Women need to know that men and women are completely equal in the eyes of God.

We need to take care of them before they take care of us.


In case of your sentences, without context they mean the same thing.

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There is no correct or incorrect the meanings are different.


Q1. >"I need to be playing in Europe"

A1. >means I need to continue to play in Europe


here "be" is an auxiliary verb used to define we are continuing to do something. In our case "playing"

Hence the meaning of the above sentence.


  • auxiliary verb (CONTINUE) [ + -ing verb ]

    used with the present participle of other verbs to describe actions that are or were still continuing:

    Ref C.E.D.


Q2. >I need to play in Europe

a2. >means I want very much to play in Europe (in the future)

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