De Bruyne seeking career-defining title in Champions League

London, May 3 (US): Kevin De Bruyne may still lack a career-defining title that would comfortably place him among the top stars of his generation.

He may never get it at the international level, with Belgium’s ‘golden generation’ failing over and over again, and string winning domestic trophies with Manchester City not going to be enough for many – even if, it seems, De Bruyne himself.

So, will his big moment come in the Champions League? “Obviously winning it would change the narrative,” said De Bruyne.

It has been a tale of pain and tremendous achievement so far in Europe’s premier competition for the 30-year-old playmaker with magic in his shoes and his eyes in the back of his head. , according to the Associated Press.

Just last year, De Bruyne didn’t last an hour in his first Champions League final before he needed his help walking off the field – dazed and confused – after sustaining a broken nose and eye socket in his collision with Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger.

Kevin De Bruyne may still lack the career-defining crowning title that would comfortably place him among the top stars of his generation.

He may never get it at the international level, with Belgium’s ‘golden generation’ failing over and over again, and string winning domestic trophies with Manchester City not going to be enough for many – even if, it seems, De Bruyne himself.

In 2020, he was part of the City team that Lyon surprisingly defeated in the quarter-finals. De Bruyne then grumbled: “We need to learn.”

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And in 2019, he didn’t even start against Tottenham in the first leg of the quarter-final, which City lost 1-0 before coming out in excruciating circumstances a week later.

Even this season may be a missed opportunity. City beat Real Madrid in the first leg of the semi-final last week, but came out with a 4-3 victory at the Etihad Stadium.

The return leg is on Wednesday and De Bruyne knows the match is in the balance.

De Bruyne scored an early goal and set up another against Madrid to continue his inspiring streak of late-season performances. After taking some time to get fully fit after injuring his ankle ligaments during last year’s European Championships, De Bruyne is in great shape and climbing up in the big matches.

In his last 10 matches, he scored against Manchester United and Liverpool in the Premier League, and both Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid in the Champions League. The assists continue to flow from his precise crosses.

The world is still waiting, though, for De Bruyne to deliver this man of the match performance in a final as big as the Champions League, only to crown a bloated City resume with three Premier League titles, six Domestic Cups (English Premier League and League One), and the award for Best Player of the Year (in 2020 and 2021). For some, this will elevate him to greatness.

De Bruyne was City’s best player on his way to the final last year, including an impressive goal-scoring performance in the semi-final win over Paris Saint-Germain that marked the club’s coming of age in the competition.

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Under the coaching of Pep Guardiola and thanks to more than a decade of massive spending by the club’s ownership from Abu Dhabi, City have become a major player in Europe without any hardware to display.

De Bruyne is not your typical soccer player. Off the field, he loves to live far away from the spotlight. He’s pretty much a team player, and his countless passes seem to give him more satisfaction than scoring goals.

Take 10 days ago, for example, when he missed an opportunity to take a penalty against Watford in the league to allow his teammate Gabriel Jesus to complete a hat-trick.

“For him, it was important,” said De Bruyne. “I don’t care if I score the penalty – that’s a goal that doesn’t lead me to what I want to achieve.”

Winning the Champions League will do that.

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