After Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne hit 50 Premier League assists faster than any other player, we reflect on his best creative moments.
Kevin De Bruyne’s pass for Sergio Aguero’s opening goal in Manchester City’s 3-1 win over Bournemouth on Sunday made the midfielder the fastest player to reach 50 assists in Premier League history.
The Belgium international hit the landmark inside 123 Premier League appearances, beating Mesut Ozil’s record of 50 in 141 matches.
The assist that clinched the record was by no means De Bruyne’s finest work; he appeared to miskick a shot and the ball dropped fortuitously to Aguero, who gleefully tucked it into the Bournemouth net to give City the lead.
But over the years De Bruyne has earned a reputation for the artistry and incisiveness with which his passes unpick opponents. We have selected five of his best.
He is one with the ball
50 @premierleague assists in 123 games.
No one has done that quicker than @DeBruyneKev.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) August 25, 2019
City supporters have become accustomed to seeing De Bruyne surrounded by opponents and when Watford visited the Etihad Stadium on this occasion, the Belgian found himself confronted by a line of Hornets defenders as he sauntered into the box.
Utterly undaunted, he floated the ball over the heads of seven opponents and somehow picked out Pablo Zabaleta, who half-volleyed home with aplomb.
Manchester City 7-2 Stoke City – October 14, 2017
The supreme confidence De Bruyne has in his own passing ability was there for all to see during City’s destruction of Stoke at the Etihad in 2017-18.
De Bruyne rightly backed Leroy Sane’s ability to out-pace Geoff Cameron and rolled a 30-yard pass along the turf, right into the Germany international’s path.
Newcastle United 0-1 Manchester City – December 27, 2017
There are few sights in football more pleasing than a weighted pass being struck first time into the net, and few players are more likely to deliver it than De Bruyne.
After 31 minutes at St James’ Park, De Bruyne nonchalantly dinked a looping ball forwards and Raheem Sterling made a dart for the six-yard box, where he beat Rob Elliot with a sliding volley.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) June 15, 2018
City were on course for a disappointing goalless draw at Southampton in the final game of 2017-18, before a marvellous intervention by De Bruyne.
The midfielder was deep inside his own half when he floated a 50-yard pass that landed on the toes of Gabriel Jesus on the edge of the Southampton box, and the Brazilian striker dinked it over Alex McCarthy.
Manchester City 2-2 Tottenham, August 17, 2019
De Bruyne produced a masterful pass to help Sterling break the deadlock after 20 minutes of City’s clash with Tottenham in their second Premier League game this season.
Spotting Sterling’s back-post run early, De Bruyne received the ball from Bernardo Silva and whipped a first-time cross that curled onto the England winger’s head for a straightforward finish.
I mean, these assists from @DeBruyneKev were pretty
— Manchester City (@ManCity) August 18, 2019