Chelsea travel to the Etihad Stadium for a top of the table Premier League showdown on Saturday lunchtime.
Former Manchester City striker Shaun Goater believes midfielder Kevin De Bruyne is the key to toppling Chelsea this weekend, as Antonio Conte’s side travel to the Etihad Stadium in Saturday lunchtime’s Premier League showdown.
Goater told SkySports the Belgian will want to be at his best as De Bruyne is reunited with his former club.
The 25 year-old has played a talismanic role for Pep Guardiola’s side this term, having scored just two goals but assisted nine time already this campaign.
As De Bruyne meets up with his old West-London employers once again, Goater is under no impressive the Belgian need to prove himself, but wont be unhappy if he were to get one over on his old team.
Goater said: “Does he have anything to prove? He’s already proved it. He’s come to the Premier League and he’s performed absolutely exceptionally.”
“Yes, it’ll be in his mind that he wants to play well, he typically performs at a seven, eight every game, so it’ll be at the back of his mind but he’ll just go and play his normal game. He’ll certainly be wanting to get one over on Chelsea.”
After signing for Chelsea from Genk on the last day of January transfer window of 2012 – as reported by BBC Sport – Kevin De Bruyne was loaned out to Bundesliga side Werder Bremen, scoring 10 goals in 33 appearances over the season.
On his return to West London, Jose Mourinho promised the burgeoning midfielder game time. The Belgian however failed to impress in a more defensive role and was limited to just three games for The Blues.
De Bruyne returned to Germany with VfL Wolfsburg for the next season and again notched double figures of 13 during the campaign.
His exploits caught the eye of Manuel Pellegrini, who then swooped last August for a fee The Guardian reported to be in the region of £51m.
This season, the midfielder has further blossomed as a fully-fledged number ten. As The Citizens creator-in-chief this term, De Bruyne is one short of an impressive ten assists after just 12 games this term in Pep Guardiola more possession-based system.
Goater agrees and states the roles of both he and David Silva are vital if Manchester City are to take all three points on Saturday lunchtime.
“Where City will look to dominate is actually behind Chelsea’s defence,” the former City striker said. “[And] that’s where they’ll try to get Silva or De Bruyne or Yaya Toure if he’s there, because they can then ask a questions of the Chelsea centre-backs.
“That’s what Pep Guardiola does really well, in terms of allowing De Bruyne and Silva to get in those positions, ask questions, make runs and pass forward.”