Belfast Telegraph

Kevin De Bruyne focus

Kevin De Bruyne helped Manchester City record an eighth Premier League win in a row as they defeated West Brom 3-2.

Here Press Association Sport assesses the in-form Belgian's afternoon at The Hawthorns.

POSITIONING

De Bruyne has found himself stationed in a deeper midfield berth this season while boss Pep Guardiola attempts to fit in the plethora of attack-minded players at his disposal. At times here the Belgian slipped into the right-back berth but West Brom having eight men behind the ball for most of the afternoon also allowed De Bruyne to push on, albeit without his usual impact.

LINK-UP PLAY

De Bruyne was heavily involved in City's third goal midway through the second half, linking up with Leroy Sane on the left before feeding David Silva, who in turn moved the ball out for Kyle Walker to cross to scorer Raheem Sterling. De Bruyne was not always at his incisive best and that perhaps explained why City did not create as many chances as normal. The one delicious cross from the right that he did land on David Silva's head was guided over by the Spaniard.

SHOOTING

His afternoon was perhaps summed up by an 85th-minute attempt that he got horribly wrong and fired wide after being played in by Sterling. Otherwise De Bruyne was reduced to long-range attempts, and none of those got anywhere near to the target, whether it was with his left-foot in the first period, or on his right after the break.

IMPACT

This will not be used in the highlight reel if De Bruyne does go on to win individual awards at the end of the season. City failed to carve out as many openings as they normally do and perhaps De Bruyne missed record-chasing Sergio Aguero in that sense. Nevertheless, he was still a part of City's third goal as their Premier League winning streak continued.

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