Kevin De Bruyne breaks silence on Record-Breaking Season Amid Concerns Over Form and Playing Time
Kevin De Bruyne, a midfielder for Manchester City, acknowledged his critics after coming off the bench in the 1-0 victory against Crystal Palace. He described himself as an elderly man and recognized his limitations and abilities.
Kevin De Bruyne reassured those who are worried about his form by highlighting his outstanding record in the Premier League this season. Despite facing more challenges this year, particularly since the World Cup, the midfielder has struggled to secure a starting spot in Pep Guardiola’s team due to injury and illness. He had to settle for a place on the bench once again in the recent 1-0 win against Crystal Palace.
De Bruyne believes that his high standards may be working against him, just as Erling Haaland’s exceptional scoring abilities are setting the bar high. Nevertheless, De Bruyne pointed out that he leads the league in assists, chances created, and big chances created, despite starting only five of City’s last nine games. Therefore, he is satisfied with his current level of performance.
“Obviously, people have a different standard [for me] to a lot of players. It’s just what it is,” he said.
“People expect me to score every game and assist every game. I think I’ve been playing quite well. Maybe there have been fewer assists but I don’t think I’ve been creating less.
“I don’t really look at these things. I feel fine. I think I’m playing alright – maybe not the best I’ve every played but it’s good.
“You know the stats – I’ve created the most in the league and have the most assists and I’ve not even played four or five games. For me, it is the same. I’ve been doing the same thing for eight years here and 15 years in professional football so I’m feeling fine.
“I expect more from myself than you guys will ever do. You know what people are going to say outside but there’s no pressure. I play football because I like it, not because I have to, so it’s good.”
As City undergo a change in their team adapting to Erling Haaland spearheading their attack after two years without a centre-forward, all eyes are on how Guardiola will oversee the transition. The former Dortmund striker is having to acclimatise too though, and De Bruyne doesn’t feel like he has to do anything different on the pitch to what he has been doing for his entire career.
“Whenever I go on the pitch I try to do what I do always. I don’t feel that I necessarily have to do something different,” he said.
“I’m an old man in this game, I know how it is. I’m fine. Obviously you want to play as much as possible but if you don’t play you do the best for 10 minutes and that’s what I did and get the win for the team.
“I don’t have to do anything different. People know who I am after eight years, know what I do for the team, what I’m good at and what I’m not good at. I don’t want to do different things that I’m not good at on and off the pitch. Everyone has his role to play and that’s really important to maintain your role.”