The past six months have not been ideal for Manchester City's Belgian maestro, Kevin De Bruyne.
After fracturing his cheekbone in the Blues' 1-0 loss to Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League final in May, the Belgian picked up a serious ankle injury while playing for his country at Euro 2020.
However, after a sluggish start to the 2021/22 Premier League season, the 30-year-old has begun to show signs of his former self - most recently scoring a crucial winner against Chelsea to extend the club's lead at the top of the Premier League table.
And yet, Catalan boss Pep Guardiola believes the best is yet to come from his midfield superstar.
“It is not his best, but he is much better, today he gave everything and scored an outstanding goal,” Pep Guardiola said after Saturday's triumph.
He continued, “I know how difficult it is to play against Chelsea. They defend all the corridors inside, there are no channels to attack, you have to be so patient and not lose the ball in certain positions that they are waiting for.
“After that, the most important thing is to have the quality in the final third."
The Catalan boss was quick to point out just how crucial De Bruyne's contribution to his team has been for the club's roaring success in the past five seasons.
“I have known Kevin for six seasons together," Guardiola stated.
"Nothing we have done would have been possible without him. (But) Our job as manager is to demand more. I want to take them out of their comfort zones and get him to believe he can do better.
“I think Kevin can do it. I want more because I know he can do it. It’s nice, I want Kevin to play better in some moments and some games so I have to push him and demand it because I know he can do it.”
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