Kevin De Bruyne put in a magical performance against Wolves that prompted Jamie Carragher to rank him ‘behind only Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo’ in the world… can he help Man City overtake Liverpool this season and even win the Ballon d’Or?
- Kevin De Bruyne returned to Premier League action with a masterclass display
- The Belgian maestro was at the heart of City’s dominant 3-1 win over Wolves
- Jamie Carragher says De Bruyne is only ‘behind Messi and Ronaldo’ in the world
- De Bruyne will be relied upon if City are to reclaim their spot back at the top
Even with a reduced pre-season camp, the reigning PFA Player of the Year showed zero signs of ring rust as he created, scored and helped out his team defensively when it was needed.
He was at the heart of City’s opener as he won, and dispatched, a penalty to break the deadlock before dictating play from the centre of the park, playing a role in City’s second and third goals to get their season off to a promising start.
Kevin De Bruyne returned to Premier League action with a masterclass display against Wolves
It felt like it was no time at all since we last saw the Belgian maestro, leaving many in awe with yet another brilliant performance at the heart of City’s midfield.
De Bruyne’s consistently-high performances over the years have left no doubt in the mind of Jamie Carragher, who believes the City star is the best of the rest and is only behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in the running for the Ballon d’Or.
‘Yes, he’s the best player in the Premier League,’ Carragher told Sky Sports after City’s win over Wolves.
The 29-year-old won a penalty in the first half before going on to superbly dispatch it
He was instrumental for City as he started the new campaign where he left off the last one
‘He got PFA Player of the Year last year, but sometimes someone can have a great season and get the award but if you ask me, even if he never got that award, he’s still the best player in the Premier League.
‘I used to say that about Eden Hazard before he left to go to Real Madrid. Whether he won PFA Player of the Year or not, he was still the best player.
‘Now, Kevin De Bruyne is the best player.
‘When we talk about the best players in the world, I would say De Bruyne, right now, I would put him top of the second band of players behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. I would put him top of that list.
‘If you said to me, who would I want in my team? It’d be Kevin De Bruyne. The numbers he gets with assists and with goals, I just think he’s a manager’s dream.’
Jamie Carragher was full of praise for De Bruyne after Monday’s performance against Wolves
Carragher says De Bruyne is behind only Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in the world
And for Pep Guardiola, he most certainly is.
Before discovering City’s fate over their now dismissed two-year ban from European competitions, Guardiola faced the prospect of losing the 29-year-old if that ban was upheld.
But once the Court of Arbitration for Sport overturned UEFA’s lengthy ban, Guardiola could breathe a sigh of relief.
And for good reason. Since the start of last season, De Bruyne has been City’s most prolific player going forward and was directly involved in 34 goals in the Premier League (14 goals and 20 assists) – more than any other player.
Against Wolves alone he created six chances, won five tackles and managed to score one and assist one in a man-of-the-match performance, further showcasing how valuable he is to City, as they challenge on all fronts once again this season.
City’s star midfielder was voted as the PFA Player of the Year for the 2019-20 campaign
De Bruyne will need to replicate his heroics from last season if City are to topple Liverpool
While the arrival of Ferran Torres will have plugged the gap left by Leroy Sane, City have made no other attacking additions, leaving the responsibility to make Guardiola’s side tick firmly on De Bruyne’s shoulders.
If City are to have a chance of closing the gap to Liverpool and reclaiming their spot back at the top of English football, De Bruyne will need to maintain his unmatched levels of consistency if they are to have any hope.
Should he be able to replicate his efforts from last season and help finally end City’s long wait for Champions League glory, then claims to name De Bruyne as the next Ballon d’Or winner wouldn’t be so far-fetched.