De Bruyne welcomes Messi comparisons while hailing Man City boss Guardiola as his best

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The Belgium international forward has been in fine form this season, but he credits his manager and playing in a title-chasing side for that

Kevin De Bruyne has welcomed comparisons to Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi as he continues to shine for Manchester City.

The Belgium international has been a regular source of assists throughout his time at the Etihad Stadium, while he netted a crucial effort of his own in his last outing against Chelsea.

France, Portugal, Belgium all win: 3/1

Pep Guardiola has been quick to shower the 26-year-old with praise, while Antonio Conte has questioned why Jose Mourinho ever allowed him to leave Stamford Bridge.

So good has De Bruyne been of late that his performance levels and value to his club has been likened to the talismanic presence of Messi at Camp Nou and Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid.

Asked by Le Soir how it feels to be placed in such illustrious company, De Bruyne said: “It’s not up to me to say, but it’s nice to hear too.

“Beyond that, there’s no point focusing on my individual performance.

“In my eyes, City are a very credible title challenger now more than ever as they are winning in the big games.”

Guardiola, who has worked with star-studded squads at Barca and Bayern Munich in the past, recently said of De Bruyne: “Kevin is one of the best players I have ever seen in my life in terms of how he can make absolutely everything, everything.

“He is a top, top quality player. We are so proud and so happy he is with us.”

Pep Guardiola Kevin De Bruyne Chelsea Manchester City 30092017

While his manager is a big fan of him, those feelings are clearly mutual.

In fact, De Bruyne considers Guardiola to be the finest coach he has ever worked for.

He added on the Catalan: “He’s both a very precise manager and one close to his players. He’s hugely demanding but also knows when to relax by giving us time to clear our heads. 

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“All his work revolves around the team, which he values more than the individual. He changes small things every game. Tactically, he’s clearly the best manager I’ve played under.”

The efforts of De Bruyne and Guardiola have helped City to the top of the Premier League table, with 19 points collected from seven fixtures.

They will return to action after the international break with a home date against Stoke.

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