Manchester City Boosted by De Bruyne's Return in Pursuit of Historic Treble Repeat

Former Manchester City manager Brian Horton has heaped praise on the return of Kevin De Bruyne, believing the Belgian maestro’s presence to be pivotal to the club’s success this season.

Neil Goulding
Neil Goulding

Last Updated: 2024-02-06

Louis Hobbs

3 minutes read

“You just can’t see them losing at the moment, can you?” Horton remarked, reflecting on the City’s impressive unbeaten streak and recent Club World Cup triumph.  

In an exclusive interview with, Horton expressed his admiration for De Bruyne’s talents, labelling him as one of the best midfielders in the world. He is confident the return of Belgium playmaker De Bruyne is a ‘Brucie Bonus’ in their quest to make history and become the first team to win a memorable treble in successive seasons.  

De Bruyne’s Impact

Having recently recovered from a five-month absence due to a hamstring injury, De Bruyne made an immediate impression against Newcastle United, contributing with a goal and an assist. Horton praised De Bruyne’s adaptability and said he is a player with great vision, passing skills, and goal-scoring ability. 

Team Unity 

The former City boss also commented on De Bruyne’s humility and team-oriented attitude, highlighting the lack of egos within Pep Guardiola’s squad. “To be honest, I could say that about most of the City team,” Horton said, emphasising the collective spirit fostered by Guardiola.  

Image Credit: Kevin De Bruyne’s Twitter (X) Account

Image Credit: Kevin De Bruyne’s Twitter (X) Account

Resurgence and Optimism  

Horton was upbeat about City's chances as they looked back on their comeback from a brief slump earlier in the season, particularly with the impending return of Erling Haaland, the Premier League's top scorer from the previous year. “With De Bruyne and Haaland back, they’ve certainly got a very good chance,” Horton remarked, hinting at City’s hunger for more silverware.  

City’s Sublime Performance 

Horton has been amazed by City's resilience in the face of hardship. Horton has been involved in professional football for more than 2000 games as a player and manager. He cited a conversation he had with former manager David Pleat, who had hailed City's recent performances as "perfect football". 

Pursuit of Perfection  

Horton thinks that De Bruyne's comeback will provide City with a big boost as they prepare for the business end of the season and try to make history by winning a historic treble in back-to-back seasons. “His [De Bruyne] assist and his goal was brilliant – and City were just sublime in that first half,” Horton remarked, echoing the sentiments of many admirers of the club’s playing style.  

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Neil Goulding
Neil GouldingSenior Sports Reporter

Neil has been a journalist for longer than he'd care to remember, having written for national newspapers and respected publications for over 25 years. For the last three years he has worked freelance for BBC Sport, working on the production desk as a sub-editor and also as a writer, covering a whole range of sports.